Limited by Body Habitus

An American Fat Story

Jennifer Renee Blevins

Limited by Body Habitus

Jennifer Renee Blevins

Distributed for Autumn House Press

192 pages | 6 x 8 1/2
Paper $17.95 ISBN: 9781938769405 Published September 2019
Jennifer Renee Blevins’s debut memoir, Limited by Body Habitus: An American Fat Story, sheds light on her experiences living with the emotional and psychological struggles of taking up space in a fat-phobic world. Bringing together experiences of personal and national trauma, Blevins adeptly weaves the tale of her father’s gastric bypass surgery and subsequent prolonged health crisis with the environmental catastrophe of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Blevins looks to each of these events as a “leak” of American society’s pitfalls and shortcomings. These intertwined narratives, both disasters that could have been avoided, reveal points of failure in our systems of healthcare and environmental conservation.
 
Incorporating pieces from her life, such as medical transcripts and quotes from news programs, Blevins composes a mosaic of our modern anxieties. Even through despair, she finds hope in mending broken relationships and shows us how we can flourish as individuals and as a nation despite our struggles. Fierce and haunting, this memoir creates a space of narrative through body, selfhood, family, and country.
Review Quotes
Daisy Hernández, author of A Cup of Water Under My Bed
Limited by Body Habitus is a searing and honest memoir that made me reconsider everything I thought I knew about the ‘obesity epidemic’ in the United States. Blevins masterfully brings together cultural criticism, hard numbers, and her own family’s story to reveal the extent to which the obesity epidemic continues to be manufactured and misunderstood. This is no manifesto, however. Blevins takes herself to task, too, and readers are left with a poignant memoir about a father who becomes a best friend, a family that is forever altered by a medical crisis, and a daughter who wonders if, as Blevins writes: ‘our bodies remember what we do to them.’”
For more information, or to order this book, please visit https://www.press.uchicago.edu
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