Born Again Bodies Flesh and Spirit in American Christianity

ISBN-10: 0520242408
ISBN-13: 9780520242401
Edition: 2004
List price: $34.95 Buy it from $6.49
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Description: "Fat People Don't Go to Heaven!" screamed a headline in the tabloid Globe in November 2000. The story recounted the success of the Weigh Down Workshop, the nation's largest Christian diet corporation and the subject of extensive press coverage from  More...

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Book details

List price: $34.95
Copyright year: 2004
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 10/4/2004
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 337
Size: 6.00" wide x 8.75" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.144

"Fat People Don't Go to Heaven!" screamed a headline in the tabloid Globe in November 2000. The story recounted the success of the Weigh Down Workshop, the nation's largest Christian diet corporation and the subject of extensive press coverage from Larry King Live to the New Yorker. In the United States today, hundreds of thousands of people are making diet a religious duty by enrolling in Christian diet programs and reading Christian diet literature like What Would Jesus Eat? and Fit for God. Written with style and wit, far ranging in its implications, and rich with the stories of real people, Born Again Bodies launches a provocative yet sensitive investigation into Christian fitness and diet culture. Looking closely at both the religious roots of this movement and its present-day incarnations, R. Marie Griffith vividly analyzes Christianity's intricate role in America's obsession with the body, diet, and fitness. As she traces the underpinning of modern-day beauty and slimness ideals--as well as the bigotry against people who are overweight--Griffith links seemingly disparate groups in American history including seventeenth-century New England Puritans, Progressive Era New Thought adherents, and late-twentieth-century evangelical diet preachers.

List of Illustrations
Acknowledgments
Introduction: Perilous Body Gospels
A Note on Reading the Images
Gluttons for Regimen: Anglo-Protestant Culture and the Reorientation of Appetite
The Diet of Angels: Fasting in Early Modern Anglo-American Protestantism
Gospels of Physick: Medicine, Methodism, and Mortification
Rarefied Flesh: Sexual Regulation, Bodily Pleasure, and Perfection
Phrenology and Somatic Authenticity
Sculptors of our Own Exterior: New Thought Physiques
"Nothing but a Dense Shadow": The Body as Delusion?
Corresponding Bodies
Female Sexual Pleasure and Mystical Communion: Reproducing a Civilized Race
Regimens Shaping Bodies to Come
Minding the Body: Divergent Paths of New Thought Perfectionism
Living on Air: Gospels of Fasting, Conquest, and Purgation
William Sheldon's Metaphysical Somatotypes
God in a Body: Gastronomy and Black Power
Pray the Weight Away: Shaping Devotional Fitness Culture
Shedd-ing Pounds: Scripture and Devotional Practice in Service to Weight Loss
The Burgeoning Christian Diet Culture
From Empathy to Authority: Shifting Models of Expertise
Religious Devotion to Thinness Outside Mainstream Protestantism
"Don't Eat That": Denial, Indulgence, and Exclusion in Christian Diet Culture
Poisoned Bodies, Blemished Souls: Food as Taint and Transgression
Loved on a Smaller Scale: Women, Weight, and the Divine Lover Above
The Power of Perfection: Purified Bodies and Racialized Worlds
Epilogue: Bodies in Crisis?
Notes
Primary Source Bibliography
Index

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