Talking Fat: Health vs. Persuasion in the War on Our Bodies

Pearlsong Press
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Fat is bad, right? 

Well, no, being fat in and of itself is not bad. However, for the last decade we have been so inundated with negative messages about fat that it is revolutionary to think otherwise. These messages, this rhetoric, though not succeeding in making our society thinner or healthier, have been a resounding success in making us believe that fat is a Very Bad Thing and that fat people are Very Bad People. The rhetoric of the "war on obesity" has only succeeded in increasing prejudice and decreasing health in the very people targeted for "help" while increasing profits for those perpetuating such rhetoric.

In this book, Lonie McMichael, Ph.D. examines the rhetorical success of the current "obesity" propaganda while considering its absolute failure to make people thinner or to make a difference in the health of the American people. Considering empirical studies and statistics as well as the actual experience of fat people, McMichael asserts that the "obesity epidemic" is about many things—prejudice, profit, control, etc., but it is not about health. Arguing that our current paradigm is only hurting our society and the individuals within it, McMichael calls for a change in policy and perspective on fat in American society.

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About the author

Lonie McMichael has wanted to be a writer since age 3. For many years she practiced her trade as a technical writer in the high tech industry. After going to graduate school, she found her calling in fat studies, exploring the fat individual’s experience. Graduating with a Ph.D. in technical communication and rhetoric, she wrote her dissertation on the medical rhetoric surrounding the “war on obesity” and how such rhetoric legitimizes fat prejudice—topics which have become two separate books, Talking Fat: Health vs. Persuasion in the War on Our Bodies and Acceptable Prejudice? Fat, Rhetoric and Social Justice.

McMichael is currently teaching professional and technical writing at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and working on her third book about things fat.
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Additional Information

Pearlsong Press
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Published on
Aug 1, 2012
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Best For
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Language Arts & Disciplines / Rhetoric
Medical / Bariatrics
Medical / Public Health
Self-Help / Eating Disorders & Body Image
Social Science / Sociology / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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