Friday, October 29, 2010

Mirrors of Fat

“(This) is about how fat in any society is never just about weight or health or looks. Instead, fat is a symbol, a mirror we can gaze into to glimpse the things society tells us are the fairest of them all-and the things society tells us are the grossest, least fair of them all. Looking closely at how people think about fat tells us a lot about how they think about the world in which they live.” – Don Kulick and Thais Machado-Borges in Leaky in Fat: the Anthropology of an Obsession

“…left to itself, stuff tends to modesty. There is a natural humility to things, in that they work best as the frame that guides our sense of what is appropriate, rather than as things we pay regard to in their own right. This tendency can make stuff quite powerful when put into the service of ideology. when someone tells us we should do this or be that, we bridle and feel put upon. When this message is carried, not by a hectoring voice, but well hidden with the mere substance of apparently silent stuff, we are less likely to sense our disempowerment.” – Daniel Miller in Stuff

“In that tradition (of Marxist analysis), ideology stood for paradox; that as a process of objectification people may well understand themselves in the mirror of the world they live within. but what happens when that world is created by others, rather than by themselves? If they see themselves in that world, then it would follow that they now misunderstand themselves” - Daniel Miller in Stuff

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