Author(s): Susie Orbach
In the past decades, the pressure to perfect and design our bodies has been unprecedented. Men are encouraged to surgically pump up their pecs, breast enhancement is a sweet sixteen birthday present in the suburbs of America, and eating problems - from bulimia to obesity - are growing daily, affecting children as young as six. In China, women are having their legs broken and extended by 5cms. In Iran, behind the Hijab there are 35,000 cosmetic nose reconstructions a year. The body is no longer a given and to possess a flawless one has become the ambition of millions. In her years of practice as a psychoanalyst, Susie Orbach has come to realise that the way we view our bodies is the mirror of how we view ourselves: our body becomes the measure of our worth. In this book, she raises the fundamental questions about how we arrived here and proposes a new theory on how we became embodied.
'A timely counterblast against our harsh new visual culture, obsessed with the perfection of the physical self.' - The Times
Winner of Association for Women in Psychology Distinguished Publication Award 2010. Long-listed for Foyles/Bristol Festival of Ideas Best Book of Ideas 2010.
"'A smart and rich compendium of what is going on within and without our bodies today.' The Times '[It] may change forever, as it did for me, the way you look at television makeover programmes, journalism that promotes physical self-perfection as "empowerment", and suspiciously svelte photos in glossy adverts.' Lionel Shriver, Mail on Sunday This is a serious book - and one of the saddest I've read in a long time. It is grounded in compassion, righteous anger and practical good sense... I came away having learnt something. We are at war with our own bodies, and both sides are losing.' Daily Mail 'A terrifying, terrific read' Scotland on Sunday 'A timely counterblast against our harsh new visual culture, obsessed with the perfection of the physical self.' - The Times"
Professor Susie Orbach co-founded The Women's Therapy Centre in London. A former Guardian columnist, she was visiting professor for ten years at the London School of Economics and is the convener of www.any-body.org. She is consultant and co-origiginator of the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty. The author of a number of books including On Eating, The Impossibility of Sex and the perennial bestseller Fat is a Feminist Issue, she lectures extensively worldwide.