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Never Satisfied : A Cultural History of Diets, Fantasies & Fat

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30 review for Never Satisfied : A Cultural History of Diets, Fantasies & Fat

  1. 5 out of 5

    Araminta Matthews

    I finished this book, perhaps not ironically, at lunch this afternoon. I found it intriguing--particularly coming off my recent perusal of "Diets that Time Forgot," a BBC reality-television series that followed 9 dieters as they historically-reenacted both time period and diet fads of Victorian, Edwardian, and Roaring Twenties eras. It was fantastic--hence the desire to read this book. While I understand that dieting before industrialization was probably non-existent as food and food sources wer I finished this book, perhaps not ironically, at lunch this afternoon. I found it intriguing--particularly coming off my recent perusal of "Diets that Time Forgot," a BBC reality-television series that followed 9 dieters as they historically-reenacted both time period and diet fads of Victorian, Edwardian, and Roaring Twenties eras. It was fantastic--hence the desire to read this book. While I understand that dieting before industrialization was probably non-existent as food and food sources were not as easily accessible. In other words, people had less stable staples, so dieting was likely not a major concern. Coupled with a worldview of corpulence as opulence, this view of diet is partly owed to fashion, as well. At the same time, I won't deny that I was disappointed that this book only spanned about 200 years of dieting history. At least it starts off with a diet that reared its head in Maine. Comfort food, that. I was most intrigued by the feminist lens through which Schwartz viewed dieting and its clear relationship to women's fashion. I was riveted by the story of the Bloomer costume, The Water Cure, and of course, Dr. Mitchell's Rest Cure (so familiar to me from my years of teaching Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper"). Much of her lens, however, is critical of diets of our past and it is clear that she is also viewing the entire subject through another lens: that lens being an overweight person (which she announces several times in the book). At the same time, I found none of that distracting. In fact, her style is engagin and, as I'd hoped, made history fun!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    Obsession with physical appearance and neurosis about food is not just a modern day phenomenon. I liked the end chapter the best when the author describes a world without fat stigma. It’s written in “acedemese” as opposed to plain English

  3. 4 out of 5

    Dixie Diamond

    Highly entertaining and an unusual topic. My only complaint (well, not really a complaint, even) is that it was published before the recent new wave of food beliefs and diet fads such as Atkins/South Beach, veganism, organics, etc., which would be really interesting in discussion.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    Decidedly not a cookbook. I wanted it to be better, but interesting ideas and a ton of content.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Nicole G.

    Would love to read an updated version, yet still entertaining and fascinating despite its datedness.

  6. 5 out of 5

    LowCarbConfidential

    A little tough to get into at the beginning because of the anachronistic style, but it begins to pick up as you get used to it and begin to see where he is going with the work...interesting so far.

  7. 4 out of 5

    shana

    This was VERY dry and very dated. There were some interesting topics (the portion about fasting, for instance), but they were few and far between.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie Fisher

  9. 5 out of 5

    Rustard Surface

  10. 4 out of 5

    Gemma

  11. 5 out of 5

    Tracy Smith

  12. 4 out of 5

    ♥ღ AIDA ღ♥ Rodkouli

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jenny

  14. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay Frahn

  15. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

  16. 5 out of 5

    Paul M.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Raihanna Faran

  18. 4 out of 5

    Beth Barnett

  19. 4 out of 5

    Joshua Disneyq

  20. 5 out of 5

    Susanne Allen

  21. 5 out of 5

    lori leathers

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jnase1

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lisa (not getting friends updates) Vegan

  24. 5 out of 5

    Marian

  25. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Yeomelakis

    Recommended by Aminatou Sow

  27. 4 out of 5

    Teresa

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jimmy

  30. 4 out of 5

    Eva

    A promising topic, but wandering and hard to wade through.

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