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Mirror, Mirror Off the Wall: How I Learned to Love My Body by Not Looking at It for a Year (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 2. Mai 2013

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Praise for Mirror, Mirror off the Wall:

"Honest, heartfelt and quirky" – The Boston Globe
“Brave and inspiring… Gruys admits to her all-too-human insecurities and describes her sometimes-difficult effort to live life without defining herself through beauty.  Her story encourages others to do the same.  This book should be required reading for those women who struggle with body-image issues—and even those who don’t.”  – Publishers Weekly, starred review
“A funny, provocative memoir.” – People magazine (3.5/4 stars)

“Kjerstin Gruys writes with honesty, insight, and humor about her struggle to maintain sanity and self-confidence in a world where women are besieged with messages about the importance of beauty and image. Kjerstin’s story will speak to anyone who is seeking to make peace with what she sees in the mirror and discover her own inner beauty.”
—Peggy Orenstein, New York Times bestselling author of Cinderella Ate My Daughter
“Kjerstin turns her thoughtful gaze to the complex nature of feminism and beauty in this gripping memoir.  I couldn't put this book down—as I flipped through page after page, I found myself nodding along with Kjerstin's astute observations. It's high time we stop picking ourselves apart and start focusing on what really matters: something deep inside, beyond what any mirror can reflect.”
—Caitlin Boyle, author of Operation Beautiful: Transforming the Way You See Yourself One Post-It Note at a Time
"Kjerstin nimbly deconstructs the internal struggle between the desire to accept ourselves and the desire to be accepted by others. Her story is an important reminder that what we see in the mirror is not just our reflection but a reflection of the society in which we live."
—Golda Poretsky, author of Stop Dieting Now: 25 Reasons To Stop, 25 Ways To Heal
“Gruys is an engaging, empathetic, and insightful storyteller, and her story needs to be heard. In a world full of conflicting messages about women's beauty and worth, it can be difficult to trust our own feelings about our bodies. Her year-long experiment illustrates how unchecked self-scrutiny can aggravate existing body-image issues, and how mirrors often play multiple roles in a woman's interior life. The media machine instructs women to control and monitor appearance at all costs, but Gruys shows us that there is freedom in letting go.”
—Sally McGraw, author of Already Pretty: Learning to Love Your Body By Learning to Dress it Well
Mirror Mirror off the Wall is not just about Kjerstin Gruy's 365 day mirror-less odyssey. It's also about the psychological cataclysm that results when So-Cal bride meets feminist sociologist inside the mind and heart of the same person. Gruys grapples with the ubiquitous wedding ‘shoulds’ and puts her own body image advocacy to the ultimate test. She emerges with powerful lessons about trust, friendship, love, and being at peace with your own body.”
—Cynthia Bulik, Ph.D., FAED, Director, University of North Carolina Center of Excellence for Eating Disorders
"Mirror, Mirror off the Wall is an engaging and entertaining read. Kjerstin Gruys strikes the perfect balance between much-needed social criticism and honest self-reflection. Gruys reminds us that in an image-obsessed society, something as small as looking in a mirror—or not—can be a political act."
—Natalie Boero, Ph.D., author of Killer Fat: Media, Medicine, and Morals in the American Obesity Epidemic
“Would you have the courage to give up looking in the mirror for a year—including your wedding day? Kjerstin Gruys did, and in doing so, learned to question her assumptions about appearance, trust, feminism, and the wedding-industrial complex, all of which she shares in this thought-provoking and honest account of her year without mirrors.”
 —Lynn Peril, author of Pink Think: Becoming a Woman in Many Uneasy Lessons
“The body issues, the issues about having body issues, the balancing act of genuine self-care: Kjerstin Gruys, quite simply, gets it. Glimpses of her interior life were articulated so honestly and with such precision that at times I felt like I was in her head—or, more accurately, that she was in mine, and that of every woman who has ever looked in the mirror and seen not how we look, but how we feel. Without offering an easy solution to the anything-but-easy body image concerns that plague so many women, this book functions as a model of possibilities of what might happen if we looked more critically at our body narratives.” —Autumn Whitefield-Madrano, founder and editor of The Beheld
"In Mirror, Mirror off the Wall, Kjerstin Gruys lets us in on a fascinating social experiment. Combining smart, insightful research on body image and the politics of appearance with deep honesty about her own personal struggles, Gruys is a great guide through the sometimes funny, sometimes treacherous waters of women and appearance. By describing her year of looking away from mirrors she helps us turn our attention toward deeper, more meaningful, and more enduring sources of beauty."
—Lynne Gerber, author of Seeking the Straight and Narrow: Weight Loss and Sexual Reorientation in Evangelical America
“Through Gruys' thought-provoking storytelling, the cerebral reader and the lover of self-help books will find satisfaction in this unique memoir. For many years, I have personally witnessed women and girls being torn apart by our culture's desire for them to fit someone else's idea of ‘perfect.’ Kjerstin wrested herself from this peril and has lived to tell about her journey to the center of herself. Kjerstin lived in the gray areas of uncertainty as she uncovered important truths -- not just for herself, but for women living in mainstream society. Every woman -- of every age and background -- can learn something profoundly meaningful about herself from Kjerstin's desire to separate herself from appearance obsession.”
—Jennifer Berger, executive director of About-Face
“Kjerstin Gruys holds a critical mirror up to weight prejudice, revealing how it distorts our lives and our society. Her year-long experiment and powerful insights point the way for people of all sizes to reject such distortions in favor of already-available fabulousness.”
—Marilyn Wann, author of Fat!so?: Because You Don’t Have to Apologize for Your Size

“Kjerstin Gruys has written a frank, intimate and entertaining account of how she tried to overcome her body image insecurities by not looking at herself in a mirror for a year. Interspersing this personal account with insights from sociology and psychology research, Gruys shows how her own struggles are taking place within a broader social context, thereby holding up a mirror to contemporary American society. Highly recommended for anyone who has felt herself peering a bit too intently in the mirror.”
—Abigail C. Saguy, author of What’s Wrong with Fat?

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Kjerstin Gruys has served as a market researcher and merchant in the fashion industry and is now a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Sociology at UCLA. Her research focuses on the relationship between gender inequality and beauty standards. She is also a longtime volunteer at About-Face, a San Francisco nonprofit that helps women resist media messages that harm self-esteem.


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Amazon.com: 34 Rezensionen
9 von 9 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
More than a Memoir 1. Juni 2013
Von KeepReading - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
The candor, humor, and sociological studies Kjerstin Gruys includes in her memoir "Mirror, Mirror,Off the Wall" make for a thought provoking and entertaining read. As a healthy living blogger, I was so appreciative of Gruys' honesty about her own battles with body image while still believing in societal acceptance for all body types. Additionally, her mirror free beauty mishaps were hilarious, yet seemed right up my alley--it takes a brave soul to give up mirrors for a year, and I know I wouldn't have fared even half as well as she did! But my favorite aspect of the book involved the research that went into it. This is more than just a 'year of' memoir, it's an in-depth look at our societal relationships to beauty and feminism.
6 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
breezy yet weighty read 6. Mai 2013
Von Autumn - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This book has the distinction of being one of the two pieces of writing so engrossing that it made me miss my subway stop. Gruys deftly handles both the seriousness and the joy of the project, all in approachable prose that leaves you feeling like you've had a nice dinner with a good friend.
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
For twenty- and thirty-somethings only 17. März 2014
Von Cari B. Clark - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Kjerstin Gruys is obsessed with her looks, is a recovered anorexic, spends a lot of time and money shopping, and is an avowed feminist who is, she repeatedly tells us, pursuing an advanced degree at UCLA and feels very responsible toward her students.

She ends up being so worried about how she looks in her wedding dress she buys four of them. I could not relate well to her position, possibly because I am old enough to be her mother, but I have had body issues of my own, so I thought I would like to find out what she had to say.

Gruys decides to quit looking in the mirror for a year, and plans a gradual withdrawal. That's fine, but she refers to going "cold turkey" at one point. Uh, no, you did it gradually, dear.

While I applaud her determination to go for an entire year without gazing into a mirror, it made me uncomfortable to read some of the tales in this book. She has a terrible hangover after her bachelorette party (held at a drag show in Los Angeles, but she assures us that because the establishment particularly caters to women's birthday parties and bachelorette nights, it's okay). She also lets us in on some rather cringe-worthy exchanges with her fiancé--and their holier-than-thou (and intolerant) attitude about his parents' conservative views struck me as immature, to say the least. I also could read between the lines that Gruys' "outspokenness" probably meant that she lectures one and all about how right her feminist opinions are, and how wrong any one else's position is, and that maybe there had been some exchanges like that with the in-laws in the past. Again, I chalk this up to immaturity; learning to get along with the in-laws means that some things need to be left unsaid, and for an academic--especially one soaked in women's studies--who is used to having people hanging on her every word, that's tough.

But when it comes to her wedding, Gruys sticks to her guns and doesn't check herself out. It was heartening to read her assessment: "Before I gave up mirrors, I'd never imagined I could feel beautiful without knowing what I looked like." Wow. This is what women need to hear. Beauty has a lot more to do with what is inside (confidence, joy, peace) than outward appearance (money, clothing, and let's face it, the luck of the draw).

All in all, a good idea, but I suppose a little too much personal information. In this day and age, though, when self-restraint is in short supply and everyone bares all online, it is par for the course. I'm glad she went public with her project, but this will probably resonate more with younger women.
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
funny, informative, thought-provoking 3. Juni 2013
Von Y. K. - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
I wish I could have read a book like this when I was younger. Great read combining an inspiring personal story with social science.
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Mirror Mirror Review 13. Juni 2013
Von Gay Koopman - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Great book -- helps all ages to accept themselves for who they are, not who they should be or what they think others want them to be. This became apparent with all the nasty comments from her blog from people who didn't even know her, but judged what she was doing and their view of how she looked -- and it had NOTHING to do with her! I especially loved all the research and statistics Kjerstin put in the book -- while it is a personal book, the stats make one sit up and pay attention. While I have recommended this book to everyone, I especially think teen/20 year old girls would benefit....as well as middle aged women as we go through our "stage." (Honestly, I'm sure there are some boys out there that could benefit as well). Nice work, Kjerstin!
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