Cover of: Fearing the Black Body | Sabrina Strings
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Last edited by Devon Meunier
December 3, 2020 | History
An edition of Fearing the Black Body (2019)

Fearing the Black Body

The Racial Origins of Fat Phobia

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This edition was published in by NYU Press

304 pages

There is an obesity epidemic in this country and poor black women are particularly stigmatized as “diseased” and a burden on the public health care system. This is only the most recent incarnation of the fear of fat black women, which Sabrina Strings shows took root more than two hundred years ago.

Strings weaves together an eye-opening historical narrative ranging from the Renaissance to the current moment, analyzing important works of art, newspaper and magazine articles, and scientific literature and medical journals―where fat bodies were once praised―showing that fat phobia, as it relates to black women, did not originate with medical findings, but with the Enlightenment era belief that fatness was evidence of “savagery” and racial inferiority.

The author argues that the contemporary ideal of slenderness is, at its very core, racialized and racist. Indeed, it was not until the early twentieth century, when racialized attitudes against fatness were already entrenched in the culture, that the medical establishment began its crusade against obesity. An important and original work, Fearing the Black Body argues convincingly that fat phobia isn’t about health at all, but rather a means of using the body to validate race, class, and gender prejudice.

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Edition Availability
Cover of: Fearing the Black Body
Fearing the Black Body: The Racial Origins of Fat Phobia
May 07, 2019, NYU Press
hardcover

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Fearing the Black Body

First published in 2019



Work Description

There is an obesity epidemic in this country and poor black women are particularly stigmatized as “diseased” and a burden on the public health care system. This is only the most recent incarnation of the fear of fat black women, which Sabrina Strings shows took root more than two hundred years ago.

Strings weaves together an eye-opening historical narrative ranging from the Renaissance to the current moment, analyzing important works of art, newspaper and magazine articles, and scientific literature and medical journals―where fat bodies were once praised―showing that fat phobia, as it relates to black women, did not originate with medical findings, but with the Enlightenment era belief that fatness was evidence of “savagery” and racial inferiority.

The author argues that the contemporary ideal of slenderness is, at its very core, racialized and racist. Indeed, it was not until the early twentieth century, when racialized attitudes against fatness were already entrenched in the culture, that the medical establishment began its crusade against obesity. An important and original work, Fearing the Black Body argues convincingly that fat phobia isn’t about health at all, but rather a means of using the body to validate race, class, and gender prejudice.

Fearing the Black Body

The Racial Origins of Fat Phobia

This edition was published in by NYU Press


Edition Notes

Source title: Fearing the Black Body: The Racial Origins of Fat Phobia

Classifications

Library of Congress
HQ1220.U5S77 2019

The Physical Object

Format
hardcover
Number of pages
304

ID Numbers

Open Library
OL27331569M
ISBN 10
1479819808
ISBN 13
9781479819805
Amazon.com
1479819808

Lists containing this Book

History

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December 3, 2020 Edited by Devon Meunier Edited without comment.
October 11, 2020 Edited by ImportBot import existing book
August 13, 2020 Edited by ImportBot import existing book
October 3, 2019 Created by ImportBot Imported from amazon.com record.