Pretty Modern: Beauty, Sex, and Plastic Surgery in Brazil

Pretty Modern: Beauty, Sex, and Plastic Surgery in Brazil

by Alexander Edmonds
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0822348012

ISBN-13: 9780822348016

Pub. Date: 12/13/2010

Publisher: Duke University Press Books


Pretty Modern is a riveting account of Brazil’s emergence as a global leader in plastic surgery. Intrigued by a Carnaval parade that mysteriously paid homage to a Rio de Janeiro plastic surgeon, anthropologist Alexander Edmonds conducted research that took him from Ipanema socialite circles to glitzy telenovela studios to the packed waiting

Overview


Pretty Modern is a riveting account of Brazil’s emergence as a global leader in plastic surgery. Intrigued by a Carnaval parade that mysteriously paid homage to a Rio de Janeiro plastic surgeon, anthropologist Alexander Edmonds conducted research that took him from Ipanema socialite circles to glitzy telenovela studios to the packed waiting rooms of public hospitals offering free cosmetic surgery. The result is provocative exploration of the erotic, commercial, and intimate aspects of beauty in a nation with extremes of wealth and poverty and a reputation for natural sensuality. Drawing on conversations with maids and their elite mistresses, divorced housewives, black celebrities, and favela residents aspiring to be fashion models, Edmonds analyzes what sexual desirability means and does for women in different social positions. He argues that beauty is a distinct realm of modern experience that does not simply reflect other inequalities. It mimics the ambiguous emancipatory potential of capital, challenging traditional hierarchies while luring consumers into a sexual culture that reduces the body to the brute biological criteria of attractiveness. Illustrated with color photographs, Pretty Modern offers a fresh theoretical perspective on the significance of female beauty in consumer capitalism.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780822348016
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
12/13/2010
Pages:
312
Sales rank:
900,339
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

Illustrations viii

Introduction. In the Universe of Beauty 1

Part 1 The Self-Esteem in Each Ego awakens

The Siliconadas 37

The Philosopher of Plástica 47

Without Tits There Is No Paradise 57

A Brief History of Self-Esteem 75

Hospital School 89

The Right to Beauty 102

Aesthetic Health 114

Part 2 Beautiful People

Preta 123

Magnificent Miscegenation 127

The National Passion 135

Nanci's Rhinoplasty 143

My Black Is My Brand 150

Role Models 162

The Economy of Appearances 167

Part 3 Engineering, the Erotic

Creating and Modeling Nature 177

Aesthetic Medicine and Motherhood 183

The Vanity of Maids 195

Lens of Dreams 204

I Love Myself 219

Conclusion 239

Acknowledgments 253

Notes 257

References 269

Index 287

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