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Face: One Square Foot of Skin

de Justine Bateman

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2912697,317 (2.75)7
Writer/director/producer Justine Bateman examines the aggressive ways that society reacts to the aging of women's faces. "Face...is filled with fictional vignettes that examine real-life societal attitudes and internal fears that have caused a negative perspective on women's faces as they age." --The TODAY Show, a Best Book of 2021 "With her new bookFace: One Square Foot of Skin, Justine Bateman...is trying to push back against the notion that women's faces are 'broken and need to be fixed'...The book is a meditation on women's faces, and the cultural pressure to be 'ashamed and apologetic that their faces had aged naturally.' --New York Times "[Bateman] studies the topic of women and aging in her new bookFace: One Square Foot of Skin." --People "There is nothing wrong with your face. At least, that's what Justine Bateman wants you to realize. Her new book,Face: One Square Foot of Skin, is a collection of fictional short stories told from the perspectives of women of all ages and professions; with it, she aims to correct the popular idea that you need to stop what you're doing and start staving off any signs of aging in the face." --W Magazine "The actor and author ofFace: One Square Foot of Skin wants to push back against the ubiquity of plastic surgery." --Vanity Fair "Justine Bateman extends her creative talents to include fiction in this collection of vignettes that focus on how we've learned to react to women's faces as they age. Based on Bateman's own real-life interviews, the stories dig deep to uncover why we're uncomfortable with faces of a certain age, and argue that confidence--and not cosmetic procedures--are the answer to the problem." --Town & Country, one of the Best Books of Spring 2021 "Through a selection of short stories, [Bateman] examines just how complicated it is for women to get older, both in and out of the spotlight." --Glamour "Bateman asks, what if we just rejected the idea that older faces need fixing. What if we ignored all the clanging bells that remind women every day on every platform that we are in some kind of endless battle with aging." --TIME Magazine "[Bateman] argues that American society has long equated the signs of aging on a woman's face with unattractiveness. But she also asserts that women need not participate in such prejudice by accepting and internalizing it." --AARP "Right on, Justine Bateman. Thanks for helping us embrace our faces just as they are." --Upworthy "It's been a long time since I read something that made me want to stand up and cheer." --ScaryMommy Face is a book of fictional vignettes that examines the fear and vestigial evolutionary habits that have caused women and men to cultivate the imagined reality that older women's faces are unattractive, undesirable, and something to be "fixed." Based on "older face" experiences of the author, Justine Bateman, and those of dozens of women and men she interviewed, the book presents the reader with the many root causes for society's often negative attitudes toward women's older faces. In doing so, Bateman rejects those ingrained assumptions about the necessity of fixing older women's faces, suggesting that we move on from judging someone's worth based on the condition of her face. With impassioned prose and a laser-sharp eye, Bateman argues that a woman's confidence should grow as she ages, not be destroyed by society's misled attitude about that one square foot of skin.… (més)
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*I received a free advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*
This book provides many personal stories about the relationship between women and their own physical appearance and how society's expectations and judgments affect that relationship. Some of the reflections hit very close to home, as I am a woman in my mid-fifties. But overall I was unenthused about the entire book. The focus is on the experience of white women with few or no financial constraints. I think the book would have been better if it had examined the experience of a wider swath of women. But I appreciate the willingness to address this topic with honesty. ( )
  JSBancroft | Jul 5, 2021 |
Ressenya escrita per a Crítics Matiners de LibraryThing .
Face by Justine Bateman is a work that tried so hard not to be too jargonish or theoretical that it became hard to discern what points are actually being made. While I think the book will still be empowering for many I also think another large group will be left scratching their heads.

I think the idea of presenting the types of things women go through with respect to appearance, and specifically the face, in short story form can be a very useful method. I recently read another book that did something similar. But what that book added that this book didn't was some context and theory around the stories. It really wouldn't have taken much, maybe grouping the stories by a common concept and offering a short conceptual chapter for each group explaining what is being shown and what we can learn and change in that area. Instead, it just becomes a collection of stories that leaves the reader largely wondering what they can gain from them.

I will still recommend this but mostly for those already well-versed in the theories surrounding this topic so that they can essentially insert their own conceptual chapters as they read. If I were still teaching any WGS courses I could see myself selecting some of these examples to highlight other more theoretical readings and discussions. I found her book Fame to be insightful and had expected something similar, so I would warn readers who think the same thing to temper their expectations.

Reviewed from a copy made available by the publisher via LibraryThing Early Reviewers. ( )
  pomo58 | Jun 27, 2021 |
Ressenya escrita per a Crítics Matiners de LibraryThing .
So not what I thought it would be. The stories for the most part are very superficial. Sure, that was the point, to show how superficial we are in judging people and especially women, by their looks or disregard women as they age and lose their youthful looks, but I was expecting more deeper stories. ( )
  belleek | May 29, 2021 |
Ressenya escrita per a Crítics Matiners de LibraryThing .
I understand what Bateman is attempting to do here, but it’s uneven and repetitive, in large part. Also, the blurred line between what’s “real” and what’s been “fictionalized,” for the sake of the story, kept getting in the way. ( )
  hairball | May 2, 2021 |
Ressenya escrita per a Crítics Matiners de LibraryThing .
What a wonderful insight into how women are treated based solely on their looks. I know this is not new information to any woman, but to read little snippets of reactions and responses to how we age was reassuring, that most of us are and should embrace our looks at any stage in life. ( )
  beachbaby1124 | Apr 15, 2021 |
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Writer/director/producer Justine Bateman examines the aggressive ways that society reacts to the aging of women's faces. "Face...is filled with fictional vignettes that examine real-life societal attitudes and internal fears that have caused a negative perspective on women's faces as they age." --The TODAY Show, a Best Book of 2021 "With her new bookFace: One Square Foot of Skin, Justine Bateman...is trying to push back against the notion that women's faces are 'broken and need to be fixed'...The book is a meditation on women's faces, and the cultural pressure to be 'ashamed and apologetic that their faces had aged naturally.' --New York Times "[Bateman] studies the topic of women and aging in her new bookFace: One Square Foot of Skin." --People "There is nothing wrong with your face. At least, that's what Justine Bateman wants you to realize. Her new book,Face: One Square Foot of Skin, is a collection of fictional short stories told from the perspectives of women of all ages and professions; with it, she aims to correct the popular idea that you need to stop what you're doing and start staving off any signs of aging in the face." --W Magazine "The actor and author ofFace: One Square Foot of Skin wants to push back against the ubiquity of plastic surgery." --Vanity Fair "Justine Bateman extends her creative talents to include fiction in this collection of vignettes that focus on how we've learned to react to women's faces as they age. Based on Bateman's own real-life interviews, the stories dig deep to uncover why we're uncomfortable with faces of a certain age, and argue that confidence--and not cosmetic procedures--are the answer to the problem." --Town & Country, one of the Best Books of Spring 2021 "Through a selection of short stories, [Bateman] examines just how complicated it is for women to get older, both in and out of the spotlight." --Glamour "Bateman asks, what if we just rejected the idea that older faces need fixing. What if we ignored all the clanging bells that remind women every day on every platform that we are in some kind of endless battle with aging." --TIME Magazine "[Bateman] argues that American society has long equated the signs of aging on a woman's face with unattractiveness. But she also asserts that women need not participate in such prejudice by accepting and internalizing it." --AARP "Right on, Justine Bateman. Thanks for helping us embrace our faces just as they are." --Upworthy "It's been a long time since I read something that made me want to stand up and cheer." --ScaryMommy Face is a book of fictional vignettes that examines the fear and vestigial evolutionary habits that have caused women and men to cultivate the imagined reality that older women's faces are unattractive, undesirable, and something to be "fixed." Based on "older face" experiences of the author, Justine Bateman, and those of dozens of women and men she interviewed, the book presents the reader with the many root causes for society's often negative attitudes toward women's older faces. In doing so, Bateman rejects those ingrained assumptions about the necessity of fixing older women's faces, suggesting that we move on from judging someone's worth based on the condition of her face. With impassioned prose and a laser-sharp eye, Bateman argues that a woman's confidence should grow as she ages, not be destroyed by society's misled attitude about that one square foot of skin.

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