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Venus Envy : A History of Cosmetic Surgery - Elizabeth Haiken

Venus Envy

A History of Cosmetic Surgery

Paperback Published: 3rd September 1999
ISBN: 9780801862540
Number Of Pages: 384
For Ages: 18+ years old

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"Haiken has written a humane, balanced history of cosmetic surgery, drawing with sensitivity and deftness on impressive archival sources, including surgeons' folders on prospective patients... Her book is a first-class exercise in medical history, raising intriguing questions about normalization, ideological manipulation, gender, ethnicity, and the profit motive in medicine." -- Richard Davenport-Hines, Nature

"What makes Venus Envy such an enthralling read is that alongside a host of macabre and 'no -- really ' stories... there is a hugely intelligent and perceptive analysis of American culture and history going on." -- London Times

Face lifts, nose jobs, breast implants, liposuction, collagen injections -- the body at the end of the twentieth century has become endlessly mutable, and surgical alteration has become an accepted part of American culture. In Venus Envy, Elizabeth Haiken traces the quest for physical perfection through surgery from the turn of the century to the present. Drawing on a wide array of sources -- personal accounts, medical records, popular magazines, medical journals, and beauty guides -- Haiken reveals how our culture came to see cosmetic surgery as a panacea for both individual and social problems.

"An informative, often engaging account of the history of cosmetic surgery in the United States." -- Parade Magazine

"Original, well-researched, and a pleasure to read. It constitutes an astute analysis of the modern commodification of the body and the role of the medical profession in such developments." -- Roy Porter, Times Higher Education Supplement

"This is an important book, raising provocative questions about the ubiquity of cosmetic surgery in our culture... I'll certainly draw on its insights when counseling patients considering cosmetic surgery." -- Janet E. Shepherd, M.D., Journal of the American Medical Association

"An entertaining history and serious analysis of the tensions among professional medicine, entrepreneurial practitioners, and the mutable ideal of beauty that reminds us how unchanging is the American search for self-improvement... If Venus Envy is a history of cosmetic surgery, it is equally a political history of beauty." -- Sharon Lieberman, Women's Review of Books

Part history, part cultural/economic analysis, it explains better than anything else I've read what made American society so vulnerable to the seduction of the knife and the tyranny of visual conformity. As the idea of the perfect, ageless body becomes ever more dominant in our culture, it's important that we-especially women-understand how we've got ourselves into this mess. Venus Envy offers readable, perceptive answers. -- Sarah Dunant The Times of London Original, well-researched, and a pleasure to read. It constitutes an astute analysis of the modern commodification of the body and the role of the medical profession in such developments. -- Roy Porter Times Higher Education Supplement An informative, often engaging account of the history of cosmetic surgery in the United States. Parade Magazine [A] very meaty history of plastic surgery. The relevant race and gender issues are thoroughly worked over (one chapter title: 'The Michael Jackson Factor'), and there are enough horror stories about leached silicone and Homely Girl contests to make one permanently swear off the scalpel. Entertainment Weekly This book charts how millions have spent billions to enlarge or shrink body parts. Author Elizabeth Haiken has pitched a big tent. Plastic surgery embraces self-enhancement, prejudice, greed, submission and opportunity. This is about life in a democracy, where (for a price) any boy can be president and any girl can be Miss America. -- Kate Callen San-Diego Union-Tribune Haiken has written a humane, balanced history of cosmetic surgery, drawing with sensitivity and deftness on impressive archival sources, including surgeons' folders on prospective patients... Her book is a first-class exercise in medical history, raising intriguing questions about normalization, ideological manipulation, gender, ethnicity, and the profit motive in medicine. -- Richard Davenport-Hines Nature This is an important book, raising provocative questions about the ubiquity of cosmetic surgery in our culture... I'll certainly draw on its insights when counseling patients considering cosmetic surgery. -- Janet E. Shepherd, M.D. Journal of the American Medical Association An entertaining history and serious analysis of the tensions among professional medicine, entrepreneurial practitioners, and the mutable ideal of beauty that reminds us how unchanging is the American search for self-improvement... If Venus Envy is a history of cosmetic surgery, it is equally a political history of beauty. -- Sharon Lieberman Women's Review of Books

Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introduction: Present at the Re-Creationp. 1
Plastic Surgery Before and Afterp. 17
The Specialty Takes Shapep. 44
Consumer Culture and the Inferiority Complexp. 91
The Lifting of the Middle Class: Aging in Post--World War II Americap. 131
The Michael Jackson Factor: Race, Ethnicity, and Cosmetic Surgeryp. 175
Beauty and the Breastp. 228
Epilogue: The Eye of the Beholderp. 285
Notesp. 303
Illustration Creditsp. 353
Indexp. 355
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780801862540
ISBN-10: 080186254X
Audience: Professional
For Ages: 18+ years old
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 384
Published: 3rd September 1999
Publisher: JOHNS HOPKINS UNIV PR
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.91 x 15.14  x 2.34
Weight (kg): 0.58