What I'm reading right now

Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters by Courtney E. Martin.

From the inside cover:
"Why does every one of my friends have an eating disorder, or at the very least, a screwed-up approach to food and fitness?" writes journalist Courtney E. Martin. The new world culture of eating disorders and food and body issues affects virtually all-not just a rare few-of today's young women. They are your sisters, friends and collegues-a generation told that they could "be anything", who instead heard that they had to "be everything". Driven by a relentless quest for perfection, they are on the verge of a breakdown, exhausted from overexercising, binging, purging, and depriving themselves to attain an unhealthy ideal.

Courtney E. Martin is the voice of a young generation so obsessed with being thin that their consciousness is always focused inward, to the detriment of their careers and relationships. Health and wellness, joy and love have come to seem ancillary compared to the desire for a perfect body. Even though eating disorders first became generally known about twenty-five years ago, they have burgeoned, worsened, become more difficult to treat and more fatal (50 percent of anorexics who do not respond to treatment die within 10 years).
In Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters Martin offers original research from the front lines of the eating disorders battlefield. Drawn from more than a hundred interviews with sufferers, psychologists, nutritionists, sociocultural experts, and others, her exposé reveals a new generation of "perfect girls" who are obsessive-compulsive, overacheiving and self-sacraficing in multiple- and often dangerous-new ways. Young women are "told over and over again", Martin notes "that we can be anything. But in these affirmations, assurances and assertions there was a concealed message: You are special. You are worth something. But you need to be perfect to live up to that specialness."

With its vivid and often heartbreaking personal stories, Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters has the power both to shock and to educate. It is a true call to action and cannot be missed.

Photo courtesy of ruminatrix


Courtney said...

Can't wait to hear what you think Andrea. Thanks for picking it up!
-Courtney E. Martin

Andrea said...

Thanks Courtney! I met Jessica Weiner while training for the Dove workshops and she recommended it to me. I'm about a quarter of the way through and already think it's informative, real and at the same time heartbreaking.
Thanks again for taking the time to comment.