Exploring the question of what is normal, and how this ‘normal’ came to be recognised as an average we all accept, in Am I Normal? Sarah Chaney stresses it has not always been this way. Only in the last 200 years have we used studies and statistics to understand human behaviour in this manner: accordingly, Chaney questions whether these metrics of normality are themselves normal, and the politics of measuring ourselves against them.
The standards of beauty for women are considered; whether a particular face and body type is seen as ‘ideal’. The author shares her own, feet-based insecurities, noting that perceptions of normality can determine which shoe sizes shops stock, and the knock-on problems. Drawing on research from the aforementioned two centuries, Chaney intricately unpacks the meaning of all this for us today – as a society or as individuals, with all our quirks, differences and notions of how we fit into this model.
Am I Normal? touches on psychoanalysis studies carried out to understand how people respond to situations. The question of whether we are setting ourselves impossible goals to reach the normal standard is an interesting one; this fascinating read will change the way we think about what is normal.
Am I Normal?, Sarah Chaney (Profile)
Price: £16.99. Info: here
words EMILY EDWARDS
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