Becoming Women: The Embodied Self in Image Culture by Carla Rice

By Carla Rice

In a tradition the place good looks is foreign money, women’s our bodies are usually perceived as measures of worth and value. the hunt for visibility and self-acceptance could be daunting, in particular for these at the cultural margins of “beauty.”

Becoming Women bargains a considerate exam of the hunt for identification in an image-oriented global. That seek is advised during the reports of a gaggle of girls who got here of age within the wake of moment and 3rd wave feminism, that includes voices from marginalized and misrepresented groups.

Carla Rice pairs well known imagery with own narratives to reveal the “culture of contradiction” the place raises in person physique recognition were matched by means of much more restrictive female photo beliefs and norms. With insider insights from the Dove crusade for genuine attractiveness, Rice exposes the sweetness industry’s colonization of women’s our bodies, and examines why “the attractiveness fable” has but to be resolved.

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Sample text

G. to desire thinness). For the second, cultural bias is impossible to eradicate since scientists must translate their observations into words and pictures in order to make meaning. Belief systems inevitably seep in via researchers’ choice of language and metaphor. According to historian Londa Schiebinger, social constructionist theories of embodiment are important because they seek to “break the stranglehold of arguments from nature” (2000, p. 2) by showing how the meanings given to sex, race, and other differences are socially and historically variable.

Throughout this book, diverse women’s stories bring attention to an underlining, pressing issue: the ways in which our relationships to our bodies€– hence, our sense of ourselves as embodied€– are increasingly mediated by commercial media. Unfortunately, this issue is as socially significant in 2013 as it was for earlier generations. In Becoming Women, the women interviewed are continually negotiating with a media culture that attempts to objectify their bodies and render them abject. While negative experiences often overshadow the pleasures of embodiment in their accounts, their stories of resistance and action, delight and desire, resolve and recuperation are also woven throughout the book.

Within social constructionism, the connection between cultural images and actual bodies (and our body images) varies: either bodies and body images are seen as shaped by the social contexts in which they are situated, as many theorists understand it (Bordo, 1993; Ussher, 1989); or bodies and body images are not directly accessible to us without being mediated by culture and language as others argue (Butler, 1990, 1993; Oudshoorn, 1994). g. to desire thinness). For the second, cultural bias is impossible to eradicate since scientists must translate their observations into words and pictures in order to make meaning.

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