- Title: Calories & Corsets: A History of Dieting Over 2,000 Years
- Author: Louise Foxcroft
- ISBN: 9781846684258
- Page: 204
- Format: Hardcover
This work tells the story of our complicated relationship with food, the fashions and fads of body shape, and how cultural norms have changed over time Foxcroft reveals the absurd lengths people go to in order to achieve the perfect body, from eating carbolic soap to swallowing tapeworm.
Recent Comments "Calories & Corsets: A History of Dieting Over 2,000 Years"
Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose. The more things change, the more they stay the same.This book just goes to show the very truth of that statement. Two thousand years and mankind is still obsessed with weight, still obsessed with unattainable images of beauty, still desperate for fad diets and 'guaranteed' weight loss pills, lotions, clothing, equipment - particularly women, held hostage to societies fixated on ideal images of womanhood and yet blamed for their gullibility and desperat [...]
Well, evidently diets haven't changed much over the centuries. Or—the details have, but there's ever an emphasis on quick fixes and the liked fat-shaming. (Honestly, the book could have been subtitled Fat-Shaming Through the Centuries.)Because of this repetition of fad after fad, the book itself felt a bit repetitive at times, although I think it was worth that repetition to see the way attitudes have and haven't changed. Sounds like there have always been some sensible voices championing mode [...]
I am interested in the subjects of health and dieting, so this book was very interesting to me. I somewhat expected a lighter read filled with more anegdotes, but this is actually a well-researched record on the historical development of dietary advice. The recount doesn't make it more boring or bland, I actually really enjoyed reading this book. It's funny to see how even diets have trends and come back periodically. Maybe someday we'll learn that all it takes it to eat real food, move regularl [...]
Try as I might I just couldn't finish this book, which started so well, galloped along and then just gave up on me. or me on it - I'm not sure which. Perhaps I just found after a while that the author was trying to give me so many fascinating historical facts that I just became saturated with them all. An interesting read and I gave up about 2\3rds through but I don't regret reading it or nor finishing it either!
2.5 stars. Well-researched. However, it felt like a list of historical events. Lacked depth of argument. Yeah, people have dieted for a long time. I needed more.
The subtitle of this book captures this book perfectly, it is a history of dieting. We learn about how and why people sought to lose weight (for example, Lord Byron thought it would make him stupid). It is also a look at how men have been judging women since time immemorial.
A very interesting (if sometimes dry) account of diets over 2000 years. It reads much more like a very long paper, and focuses on facts, but coming away from the book it's very clear how long the struggle with diets and body image has been going on.
Fascinating history of dieting Great descriptions of dieting throughout the ages- explaining how the "trends" we see in dieting today are consistent throughout all of history.
I read this book as part of the thematic choice ("food politics") for my book club. The intention was to examine time-series data on the approach to food, dieting, and body shape, as opposed to reading one of the newer treatises that fall into the general category of food politics (of which I have read a few - "Fast Food Nation", "The Omnivore's Dilemma", "My Year of Meat", etc.). While my sense is that food politics (neuroses?) are getting worse with time, I wanted to test that against the actu [...]
Ever wonder if the contemporary craze for fad diets is without precedent? Well, it isn't. Louise Foxcroft takes the reader on a tour of starvation diets, grapefruit diets, coffee diets, hair-raising exercise routines, colonics, and slimming devices that Torquemada would adore that is, by turns, entertaining and frightening. Contemporary humanity is hardly unique in its obsession with slimming - as Foxcroft recounts in diet and exercise advice from the ancient Greeks through Dr. Adkins. I highly [...]
i'm actually somewhat surprised by how much i enjoyed this. i downloaded it on a whim thinking "this is probably going to suck but whatever!" and you know what? it didn't. it's a good, quick breakdown of history & ineffectiveness of yo-yo dieting. i do wish there had been a chapter on surgical weight-loss methods (lapband, lipo, etc.) & the fat acceptance movement (she actually did briefly mention it in the intro) but you can't have it all, i guess
Interesting and very well-researched. Covers the history of dieting from the Greeks to present-day, but mostly focuses on the last 200 years. Mostly factual but at the same time amusing and terrifying, for example: "e 3-Way Diet Program that rather worryingly claimed to 'LITERALLY MELT THE FAT OFF YOUR BODY LIKE A BLOWTORCH WOULD MELT BUTTER' "
Interesting history of dieting and the extremes people go to to cure the "curse" of overweight, the final frontier of supposedly acceptable prejudice. Not much has really changed in the past 200 years or so.
This was a very entertaining (and surprisingly interesting) little history book - the author was a tad carping at times, but the many instances of humor by far made up for it. There were a few little grammar things, but they were pretty much isolated right at the beginning.
Some interesting information about the history of dieting. We have not made much progress over the years.
Read like a dissertation rather than the fluff piece I was expecting - and that's a good thing. Very well-researched.
Quite informative. I definately learned some things about the history of peoples relationships with food. Well written. A good use of my time.
This book was interesting, eye-opening and convicting.
Very enjoyable and readable though maybe because of the fluid manner in which it is narrated, the information did not come across as clearly.
interesting book looking at food , diets over the ages starting with the greeks to the modern day would interest someone into social history
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