Dedication to Hunger: The Anorexic Aesthetic in Modern by Leslie Heywood

By Leslie Heywood

Writing as a aggressive athlete, an instructional, and a girl, Leslie Heywood merges own background and scholarship to show the "anorexic common sense" that underlies Western excessive tradition. She maneuvers deftly around the terrain of recent literature, illustrating how this logic--the privileging of brain over physique, of not easy over delicate, of masculine over feminine--is on the center of the modernist sort. Her argument levels from Plato to women's bodybuilding, from Franz Kafka to Nike ads.
In penetrating examinations of Kafka, Pound, Eliot, William Carlos Williams, and Conrad, Heywood demonstrates how the anorexic aesthetic is embodied in excessive modernism. In a compelling bankruptcy on Jean Rhys, Heywood portrays an writer who struggles to strengthen a fresh, spare, "anorexic" kind in the middle of a shatteringly messy emotional existence. As Heywood issues out, scholars are educated within the aesthetic of excessive modernism, and lecturers are harassed into its straitjacket. The ensuing issues are mirrored in constructions as assorted as gender id formation, sexual harassment, and consuming disorders.
Direct, enticing, and extremely proficient by way of the author's own involvement along with her topic, commitment to starvation deals a robust problem to cultural assumptions approximately language, gender, subjectivity, and id. Writing as a aggressive athlete, an instructional, and a lady, Leslie Heywood merges own heritage and scholarship to reveal the "anorexic good judgment" that underlies Western excessive tradition. She maneuvers deftly around the terrain of contemporary literature, illustrating how this logic--the privileging of brain over physique, of difficult over delicate, of masculine over feminine--is on the middle of the modernist sort. Her argument levels from Plato to women's bodybuilding, from Franz Kafka to Nike ads.
In penetrating examinations of Kafka, Pound, Eliot, William Carlos Williams, and Conrad, Heywood demonstrates how the anorexic aesthetic is embodied in excessive modernism. In a compelling bankruptcy on Jean Rhys, Heywood portrays an writer who struggles to improve a fresh, spare, "anorexic" type in the course of a shatteringly messy emotional existence. As Heywood issues out, scholars are informed within the aesthetic of excessive modernism, and lecturers are confused into its straitjacket. The ensuing issues are mirrored in buildings as different as gender id formation, sexual harassment, and consuming disorders.
Direct, attractive, and very proficient via the author's own involvement along with her topic, commitment to starvation bargains a strong problem to cultural assumptions approximately language, gender, subjectivity, and id.

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Extra info for Dedication to Hunger: The Anorexic Aesthetic in Modern Culture

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8] In a culture that relegated its spiritual function to woman but divided women into perhaps the most rigid historical manifestation of the virgin/whore dichotomy, consumption of food and its bodily representation in amount of flesh became the outward embodiment of a sexually hungering nature. The "pure" woman was as fleshless as possible, exhibiting a revulsion toward food. According to Michie, Victorian attitudes toward women and eating bear a marked "equation of starvation and feminine spirituality" (17).

A thin, even frail body became the sign of prosperity. This replaced the traditional view that a rotund, well-fed body signified wealth and means. [35] Here the young man carbuncular betrays his true class origins through his lack of anorexic behavior, the lack of restraint that Tiresias has "foresuffered . . /enacted on this same divan or bed, . . I who have sat by Thebes beneath the wall/And walked among the lowest of the dead" (35). The perceived lack of restraint "enacted on this same divan or bed" directly refers to Oedipus and the lack of restraint he exhibited at Thebes.

1] In making this statement Anderson highlights the absence of a third term that is necessary to outline the parameters of the question at hand: the historical context within which canonical male moderns like Franz Kafka, T. S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, and William Carlos Williams, representative figures in whom the problem was central, were working. " Rather than problematizing traditional notions of gender, the negation of the body in literary modernism seems, quite explicitly, a negation of the feminine, a reinscription and privileging of masculine prerogative in a realm of human activity that in the nineteenth century had become progressively "feminized," that of literary production.

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