Monday, June 11, 2018

Natural Causes By Barbara Ehrenreich

"Like workout culture, wellness is a form of conspicuous consumption. It is only the wealthy who have the resources to maintain the illusion of an integral and bounded self, capable of responsible self-care and thus worthy of social status. The same logic says that those who smoke (read: poor), or don’t eat right (poor again), or don’t exercise enough (also poor) have personally failed and somehow deserve their health problems and low life expectancy."

 Natural Causes sounds like a great book, and one that definitely talks about an issue I am coping with in my life. Along with ACON matters, how much shame, blame and judgment have I gotten from being in this body? It looks like her book challenges the assumptions about health, that we all have total control over our bodies and it's outcomes. Sadly many are brainwashed into thinking everyone has chosen the state of their bodies.  This is used as oppression on fat people because too many believe if we all ate right and exercised that we would be thin, just like the trolls I wrote about. 

Just like the prosperity gospel has taken over evangelical religion, we have a health "word of faith" gospel that teaches people, do everything the "right way" and your health will be perfect and you will live to be very old. Well it doesn't work that way. I knew people far healthier then me, who dropped dead of a wide range of unprepared diseases, circumstances or accidents. We now have class oppression delivered on a health platter, where some of us feel that inside dread that we can't afford certain things we know would improve our health. For some of us, the day to day workings of being income challenged have increased our stress, cortisol and limited all the "mindfulness" moments.

Just like fat people are told their very weights are all in their control and their pounds will all magically melt off because we all supposedly choose to be overweight, and are just "too lazy" to know "how easy it is", others are served magical thinking too via the new health "gospel".
People with cancer are told to visualize battling cancer cells with little imaginary lasers, people in pain now are told they can manage their pain, and that "it's all in their heads" and they don't need painkillers because the drug war comes first. Reality is suspended. 

Some seem to treat life like a race, where whoever lives the longest "wins", and that's kind of sick in it's own way because what enjoyment are they getting out of it all along the way?


  1. Dear Peeps, Barbara Ehrenreich has written good books. And now another right-on write. Some years ago, my mom was telling me about one of those day-time cooking shows, where the host was going on about veges. Mom called it on it's b.s. - unemployed people can't afford to buy the fresh veges. That "prosperity gospel is clearly another gospel - which comes straight from the pit. Godda roll...bus.

    1. Hi Sue, yes I've read some of her other books, some good stuff. Fresh veggies do cost a lot. I got some today and it's hard to get all the right kinds for the right dishes. I eat a lot of cabbage. Take care