Curvology: The Origins and Power of Female Body Shape

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9781846275524: Curvology: The Origins and Power of Female Body Shape

Anatomy professor David Bainbridge applies the science of evolutionary biology and psychology to look at women's bodies in our ancestral past, our self-image-obsessed present, and our surgically enhanced future.

Few things are as tantalizing as a woman’s curves...and yet, humans are the only mammals on earth whose females have curvy bodies. Why? And what does this unique body shape mean for us? In Curvology, researcher David Bainbridge uses his scientific know-how to get to the bottom of this anatomical mystery and to explore the social and psychological consequences of our cultural fixation with curves and fat.

Bainbridge brings thorough and clear-headed scientific research to this topic, as well as an admirable understanding of the real-life ramifications of the fascinating statistics and provocative studies he cites. Blending evolutionary biology, cultural observation, and cutting-edge psychology, Bainbridge critically synthesize the science and history of women’s body shape, from ancient homonids to the age of the selfie, offering insights into how women’s bodies became objects of fascination and raising awareness about what this scrutiny does to our brains.

Packed with controversial and compelling findings that drive us to think about the significance of our curves and what they mean for future generations, Curvology offers not just a compelling collection of facts and studies, but an endlessly fascinating take on evolution and its consequences.

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About the Author:

David Bainbridge was trained in veterinary surgery and zoology at Cambridge University, where he now teaches Clinical Veterinary Anatomy. He is the author of four previous books: on pregnancy, on the biology of sex and sexuality, on the brain, and most recently Teenagers: A Natural History (Portobello, 2009) and Middle Age: A Natural History (Portobello, 2012).

Review:

Curvology is an excellent example of how modern evolutionary thinking goes well beyond the study of old, dry bones. These days, it encompasses such lively topics as the shape of our bodies and – more critically – of our minds. You may well disagree with some of this book (I do), but I think you’ll agree that its worth your attention; it will likely challenge your thinking, while also adding to it”
- David P. Barash, author of Buddhist Biology

“Bainbridge shares insightful musings on the nature and genesis of female physical dissatisfaction. Flush with fascinating statistical data.”
- Kirkus

“In this ode to the female form, Bainbridge, a Cambridge University–trained zoologist, explains why he thinks humans are the only animals with big hips and breasts.”
- Booklist

“Critics rest easy, though a man wrote this book, Bainbridge recognizes that his state as a “forty-something Caucasian male” may not make him the “ideal person to write a book about human female body shape.” He also brings women’s voices into the book throughout with quotes at the beginning of each chapter from different interviewees. Representative of different ages and varying body mass index sizes, the anonymous interviewers have one thing in common: A general dissatisfaction with at least one aspect of their bodies.”
- Bust.com

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Book Description GRANTA BOOKS, United Kingdom, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In Curvology, Cambridge Veterinary Anatomist David Bainbridge applies the science of evolutionary biology to women s bodies, to explain why the human female is the only female animal to have curves and how these curves rule our lives, by influencing not only sexual selection but also social hierarchy and self-image. Written in lucid and engaging prose, Bainbridge s unique brand of popular science also draws on illuminating references from zoology, art history, contemporary media culture, and a range of first-person interviews with some actual human women. Offering a level-headed and fresh perspective on a contentious issue, Curvology is a fascinating, controversial, and highly newsworthy read. Bookseller Inventory # AA99781846275524

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Book Description GRANTA BOOKS, United Kingdom, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In Curvology, Cambridge Veterinary Anatomist David Bainbridge applies the science of evolutionary biology to women s bodies, to explain why the human female is the only female animal to have curves and how these curves rule our lives, by influencing not only sexual selection but also social hierarchy and self-image. Written in lucid and engaging prose, Bainbridge s unique brand of popular science also draws on illuminating references from zoology, art history, contemporary media culture, and a range of first-person interviews with some actual human women. Offering a level-headed and fresh perspective on a contentious issue, Curvology is a fascinating, controversial, and highly newsworthy read. Bookseller Inventory # AA99781846275524

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