By Jennifer Smith Maguire
This can be the first text to provide a accomplished socio-cultural and historic research of the present health tradition. health this present day isn't easily approximately well-being golf equipment and workout periods, or measures of physique mass index and cardiovascular persistence. healthy for intake conceptualizes health as a box in which members and associations might negotiate - if now not altogether reconcile - the competing and infrequently conflicting social calls for made at the person physique that signify our present period. meant for researchers and senior undergraduate and postgraduate scholars of activity, rest, cultural reports and the physique, this booklet makes use of the united states health box as a case learn wherein to discover where of the physique in modern shopper tradition. Combining observations in overall healthiness golf equipment, interviews with health manufacturers and shoppers, and a discourse research of a wide selection of health texts, this e-book presents an empirically grounded exam of 1 of the urgent theoretical questions of our time: how members discover ways to healthy into purchaser tradition and the provider economic climate and how bodies and selves develop into ‘fit for consumption.'
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Additional info for Fit for Consumption: Sociology and the Business of Fitness
Dr George Beard, the leading medical (and popular) authority on neurasthenia, stated that “physicians, lawyers, inventors, etc. furnish proportionately the largest contingent to this class of patients,” and that the disease was “oftener met with in cities than in the country, [and] is more marked and more frequent at the desk, the pulpit and the counting-room than in the shop or on the farm” (cited in Green 1986: 138–9). This was a disease afflicting men who were involved in mental labor – as Beard called it, “brain work” – rather than manual labor.
The final chapter reviews how the fitness field provides an education befitting a consumer culture and service economy. Returning to the argument that through fitness, participants negotiate social demands and thereby produce their own bodily status, the chapter addresses the seemingly paradoxical coexistence of fitness and fatness within consumer cultures around the world. The US is the global exemplar of this paradox, with the world’s largest fitness industry and, at the same time, the highest rates of population obesity and inactivity.
When I interviewed Donna, a freelance journalist, she had quit smoking two days earlier and had resolved to rejoin her gym. I asked her what had prompted these changes: Probably because I turned thirty in September. And that was good, but it’s weird, because it’s definitely the first time I’ve been aware of my age. This is the first time I’m like, “Wow. I’m an adult. ” . . I’m an adult and I feel like, sort of with the smoking, there’s so much I want to do, and I haven’t done yet. And I don’t want something stupid to derail me, like emphysema, for example, or something that I could control.
Fit for Consumption: Sociology and the Business of Fitness by Jennifer Smith Maguire