Catalog Home Page

DAMNED IF YOU DO AND DAMNED IF YOU DON'T: The (Re)Production of Larger Breasts As Ideal in Criticisms of Breast Surgery

Stuart, A., Kurz, T. and Ashby, K. (2012) DAMNED IF YOU DO AND DAMNED IF YOU DON'T: The (Re)Production of Larger Breasts As Ideal in Criticisms of Breast Surgery. Australian Feminist Studies, 27 (74). pp. 405-420.

[img] PDF - Authors' Version
Embargoed until 15 May 2014.

    Link to Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/08164649.2012.727271
    *Subscription may be required

    Abstract

    In contemporary Western societies women are often thought to have overcome inequality, become autonomous and resistant to social pressures, and in so doing gained the freedoms to make their own choices. However, this ‘post-feminist sensibility’ can arguably be seen as a double-bind as some types of ‘choices’ cannot always be recognised as freely chosen if they are taken as an indication of failing to resist social (appearance) pressures. We argue that one such example is the ‘choice’ to have cosmetic breast surgery, a practice that has received both criticism and celebration from different feminist angles. In this paper we analyse how women who have had breast augmentation are constructed by readers of an internet blog in which they are largely vilified and pathologised for not valuing their ‘natural’ (yet ‘deficient’) breasts. We demonstrate how the same discursive constructions that appear to value women’s ‘natural’ bodies simultaneously (re)produce the conditions in which women may feel the need to have breast augmentation.

    Publication Type: Journal Article
    Murdoch Affiliation: School of Psychology
    Publisher: Taylor and Francis
    Copyright: Taylor and Francis
    URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/12182
    Item Control Page