Book Review: Black America, Body Beautiful


 Black America, Body Beautiful: How the African American Image is Changing Fashion, Fitness, and Other Industries (Hardcover)

“Black America, Body Beautiful: How the African American Image is Changing Fashion, Fitness, and Other Industries”, by Eric J. Bailey (Praeger Publishers, 176 pages)is an easy read that covers a wide variety and range of subjects. It’s because if the wide scope of subjects that the Author tries to encapsulate in this book, that there isn’t enough pages to fully understand and appreciate each chapter. There is the feeling that each individual chapter could be an entire separate book of themselves; the individual chapters themselves read like research summaries, attests to the Author’s well-meaning and intent. 

At times during the book, the Author falls back on the well-worn path of cries of racism that fail to further the books’ goal of a positive, healthy, forward looking and thinking Black Body Image. There is much to be learned from slavery and racism, but it is unknown if the wide encapsulation of subjects of this book was meant to include them. Several of the subjects the Author covers are areas that are of unintended or unknown ‘slaps in the face’ of African Americans by European Americans. 

The books’ “feel-good” aura is somewhat diminished by this underlying theme. 

What does come through, bright and shining, is the intended consequence of how positive and healthy Black Women are feeling and redefining themselves as a result of the power they hold over their own misconceptions of what it means to be Black and Beautiful. 


This constant reinterpretation within and without the African American/Black communities are overwhelmingly positive forces for America, as a whole. This is the main point the Author is driving home and what should be taken from this fantastic discourse on African American Culture, Pride, Self-Image and History. http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=BrickONeil&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=027599595X&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr

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