Surgery Junkies: Wellness and Pathology in Cosmetic Culture

By Victoria Pitts-Taylor | Go to book overview

1
Visible Pathology
and Cosmetic
Wellness

Cosmetic surgery transforms the outer, physical body, and this very fact renders it controversial. But I want to argue that the cultural, medical, and political relations of cosmetic surgery reach a great deal further than the physical, to what we think of as the self 's interior, to the identity and psyche of the subject. In this chapter, I outline a range of treatments of cosmetic surgery, emerging from psychiatry, feminism, cosmetic medicine, and television, which are explored in this book. My project is to examine the ways in which they discursively establish the subjects of cosmetic surgery. Drawing from insights in contemporary social theory, I describe cosmetic surgery not only as a technology of body modification but also as a technology of psychic inscription. Cosmetic surgery instigates practices and discourses that define the self as well as the body, the personal interiority of the subject as well as its high-tech physique.

-16-

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Surgery Junkies: Wellness and Pathology in Cosmetic Culture
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Introduction 1
  • 1: Visible Pathology and Cosmetic Wellness 16
  • 2: Normal Extremes Cosmetic Surgery Television 39
  • 3: Miss World,Ms. Ugly Feminist Debates 73
  • 4: The Medicalization of Surgery Addiction 100
  • 5: The Surgery Junkie as Legal Subject 128
  • 6: The Self and the Limits of Interiority 158
  • Notes 187
  • Bibliography 195
  • Index 201
  • About the Author 205
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