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The Male Body: A New Look at Men in Public and in Private

The Male Body: A New Look at Men in Public and in Private
Author: Susan Bordo
ISBN 13: 9780374527327
ISBN 10: 374527326
Edition: 1st
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication Date: 2000-07-15
Format: Paperback
Pages: 368
List Price: $18.00

A fresh, unconventional look at the male body and contemporary notions of masculinity.

The male nude is everywhere now, from mainstream movies to magazine covers. What do we see when men take off their clothes, in public and in private? Is the male body truly exposed? In this candid cultural analysis, Susan Bordo speaks to men and women alike, scrutinizing the images and experiences of everyday life.

Drawing on personal anecdotes and insights from movies, novels, advertisements, news stories, and academic work, she inspects the assumptions that influence our perspectives on date rape, harassment, homosexuality, and pornography. She also considers recent changes in perceptions of masculinity, including a look at ad campaigns displaying the male body, the booming male beauty industry, and androgynous body ideals. Playboy, Marlon Brando, Viagra, Calvin Klein, The Full Monty, Lady Chatterley's Lover, Michael Jordan, and Philip Roth are all subjects of discussion. But whether she is examining Clarence Thomas, John Travolta, or Humbert Humbert, the butch phallus or her own grade-school experiences, Bordo rejects rigid characterizations. In exchange, she gives us a frank, tender view of her own father's body, a refreshing look at the penis in all its incarnations, and, overall, a clear and candid vision of men as flesh-and-blood human beings.

Richard Eder

...[M]ixes more or less conventional cultural scholarship with a personal memoir....[Very] interesting are Ms. Bordo's own memories and what she makes of them....Neither Mars nor Venus: what is at issue is one same small patch of mortalitymore naturally cultivated that divided and warred over. —The New York Times