Fat Bodies, Health and the Media by Jayne Raisborough (auth.)
By Jayne Raisborough (auth.)
Our televisions bulge with weight loss indicates, because the information warn of the weight problems epidemic. fats is one of these villain that better individuals are stigmatized and all of us are seduced by means of life-changing claims of a multi-billion pound vitamin undefined. but, after we query if our toilet scales can quite let us know approximately our future health, we commence to invite simply why and the way fats holds such fascination.
In this e-book, Jayne Raisborough explores interpretations of fats our bodies from Palaeolithic Europe to Poverty Porn television to argue that fat’s materiality makes it ripe for stigmatising institutions. notwithstanding, particularly in a social context that provides future health as an issue of selection, fats additionally emerges as a fantastic redemptive substance to be pummelled and starved into submission. This publication offers a ‘fat sensibility’ to illustrate how fats helps us all develop into responsibilised healthy-citizens. It asks simply what self are we being requested to nutrition ourselves into?
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3, here I want to sketch out briefly just how fat’s disease status has much to do with technological advances that allowed fat to be quantified, the professionalization of medicine, and, to bring up us to our contemporary moment, the impact of neoliberal rationalities on western healthcare. Preparing Fat to Meet Health: Statistics and Scales Despite our current preoccupation with the ‘obesity epidemic’ and our ability to repeat, as if learnt from rote, a horrifying list of the medical ailments that are argued to beset larger bodies, medical science has in the past been more concerned with the excesses of thinness.
The public nature of weighing discouraged women for whom such activities may have been deemed ‘unbecoming’. That said, Rogers suggests that the fashion of the time meant that female body shape was camouflaged, resulting in less pressure on women to ‘manage their body outline’ (ibid: 25). It was, then, mostly socially privileged men who were jumping on the scales in the spirit of scientific enquiry. 38 Fat Bodies, Health and the Media Merlin later developed a weighing scale for home use, which, at a cost of seven guineas, was solely aimed at the wealthy.
Vigarello argues that the result was a middle-class taste for thinner frames. This taste was reflected 2 The Matter of Fat 33 and promoted in popular culture. Fashion and advertising in 1920s and onwards are filled with ideals of female beauty and manhood that are svelte, toned, and wiry: thin was in and the anxious and guilt-ridden middle classes made for a ready market. Yet classed dimensions of fat were also racialized and gendered. Apprehension over middle-class girths was complemented, at various historical points, by stereotypes of immigrants and foreign Others as fat—a sign of their supposed uncivilized state (Forth 2012).