The first article we read for module 8 was “Reading the Slender Body,” written by Susan Bordo. This article discusses the “normalizing role of. Type: Chapter; Author(s): Susan Bordo; Date: ; Page start: ; Page end: ; Web address: ?. Bordo uses several examples of how our society and the “slender body” have changed from cultural diets to being the best looking “model”.

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We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. Issues of dieting, fat, and slenderness are hot topics in our culture. Bordo addresses them from a postmodern, but historical, slendder perspective. In this essay, she attempts to explain the appeal of slenderness in our society; and also, how the ideology of normal our society holds can be mentally and physically damaging for many people.

So, what does it mean to be slender? The ideas behind slenderness have changed considerably throughout human existence. Slehder Greeks believed that the regulation of food consumption would lead to self mastery and achieve moderation.

Christians during the middle ages thought of fasting as a way to cleanse to spiritual body. Then around the end of the 19th century, people began to view the physical body as the enemy rather than the soul. Hoping to defeat the body, slendet culture has created a booming market of diets, cosmological surgery, and exercising equipment.

The body management market feeds off the trends found in movies and music videos, on fashion runways, and in advertisements.

With every boy trend, comes a new body style. Remember the nineties when Kate Moss was on the runways. Her body had the shape of a 13 year old boy. No curves, no shape. It may seem as though there is nothing wrong with wanting to achieve this idealized view of health found in our culture, but what happens when the pursuit goes wrong?

Bordo begins by showing how flab became the enemy. As our culture changes, so does the idea of the perfect body. Thin is not the goal anymore.

An athletic build, free of all bulges and lumps, is the desired body style of this day and age. The more plump, the more wealth and power. Then, the slender body began to symbolized power without the outward showing of wealth through the size of the belly.

As material wealth began to take a back seat to the ability to control and manage, excess body weight began to symbolize a deficiency in will and morals. Muscularity became the embodiment of masculine characteristics.

Muscles expressed the controlled sexuality that both males and females would like to achieve. Fat, on the other hand, denotes laziness and lack of discipline. Viewing oneself in this way is unhealthy.

The body and the mind are connected, but are not necessarily representative of each other. Having a pot belly or giggly thighs does not mean you are mentally weak or lazy.

It simply means that you have not taken the time to conform your body to the ways of our culture or you may possibly suffer from some physical ailments. Next Bordo talks about our cultures encouragement of ideal slenderness. Living in a capitalist society, we are encouraged as consumers to fulfill our every desire but not to overindulge.


Our bodies often pay the price of the struggle between instant gratification and self restraint. Obesity, anorexia, and bulimia are caused by our cultures view of the body and the importance of its shape. In longing to reach bofy norm many people fall victim to these detrimental illnesses. Sadly, women are more subject to these eating disorders than men, the number of men suffering from eating disorders hhe on the rise.

So how does one manage the physical self? Many rely bord diets and other methods that produce instant gratification. Bordo looks at dieting as a direct path to failure when hoping to this idea of a normal body in our culture. She explains how deprivation leads to bingeing and the process readint dieting develops feeling of defeat and worthlessness.

To ride themselves of these emotions based around appetite and food intake, many people develop eating disorders. Bordo explains how bulimia, anorexia, and obesity each deal with the appetite. Bulimic people struggle with their appetite through bingeing and perging, in hopes of maintaining readijg fairly normalized weight. While, obese people feel they cannot fhe their appetite and let the defeat reside in their bodies. Anorectics, on the other hand, strive to excel at his or her slenderness by depriving the body of food to show complete control over the appetite.

Bras & Bordo: Living and “Reading the Slender Body” – Adios Barbie

But what about all those people who lie somewhere amongst all of this? How do they manage their bodies? Are they making any effort to help those who have lost the battle with their appetites achieve happiness?

Finally, Bordi will discuss why it is that women erading more pressure from our culture to not just be slender, but physically thin. It should first be said that the majority of men would prefer a slender woman as a partner. Women are more likely to diet, exercise, and have surgery.

Bras & Bordo: Living and “Reading the Slender Body”

Bordo speaks of women adopting a slim build as a way to compete in a phallocentric society. She says that women are the essence of sexuality, emotions, and hunger. Our culture is constantly changing. The ideas and images that exist within it carve our lives for us.

We accept the norm as what we see on television; then, we adapt. Abstract This paper provides a review of research related to the effects of Masculinity and Dieting on Self-esteem. The study reviewed research related to masculinity attained through exercise and dieting as determinant in gaining self -esteem. I hypothesize that masculinity will be predictive of self-esteem such that people who are more masculine will display higher levels of self-esteem, and that levels of dieting beliefs will Weight loss is being embarked on by a growing number of individuals worldwide.

One of the means in which this is done is by decreasing the amount of food intake, an act more popularly known as dieting. Very evidently, an ascending rate of the international population has instilled their lives with all sorts of diets.

It is notable, however, that aside from the horizontally challenged, Some may say that we need more guidance from the government in what we eat but I disagree. The control our government has is already overwhelming most of our lives so we as citizens should not have to be forced into eating anything because the government says so. We are taught from an early age on what has proper nutrition and what is healthy. Although eating a well-balanced diet is generally beneficial for your health, eating unhealthy foods occasionally will not hurt you and can actually be good for you.


Eating healthy is something we all would like to do, although it can be hard. To eat healthy is all about what you eat, which makes the choices very crucial to your result.

This means you have to set Patient T is a newborn weighing 10 pounds, and 4 ounces, and looks like a healthy, strong, and big new baby boy; during his childhood, he maintains normal weight, and lives an active life with a great appetite for food that includes: Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email. By clicking “SEND”, you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy.

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