1A Lesson Plan for Add Cake, Subtract Self-Esteem 217
Write an essay that answers the question: Why is starvation, in the context of Knapp's essay, such an acute addiction?
One. Principle of the Successful Thesis: A strong thesis is the answer to a compelling question.
Two. Why is starvation an addiction for Caroline Knapp and perhaps for others?
One. She retreats from life and withdraws into a sense of calm. She feels safe, but she is not living. When we retreat from life to defend our self, we choose death over life. I’m thinking of the woman whose husband left her and she became bitter and “undateable.” See page 217.
Two. Rigid routine makes her feel safe from wanton (reckless), self-destructive behavior. Of course, she’s blind from the fact that the rigid routine is a form of self-destruction.
Three. Starvation becomes a “silent protest” against ridiculous feminine ideals that are forced upon women. Starving both aspired to the ideal and “mocks” it. See page 218. Also see page 223 in which the Kate Moss look replaces the Marilyn Monroe look.
Four. Starvation alleviates the discomfort of “inhabiting the female body.”
Five. Starvation is an attempt to invert the food obsession as a positive symbol of nurturing and care-taking; in its place, starvation is about self-rejection and “self-inflicted cruelty.” See page 218.
Six. Starvation becomes a way of avoiding self-recriminations: “I’m such a hog” for having eaten that chocolate cake. See page 219.
Seven. Starvation has become a Faustian Bargain, a deal with the Devil, in which women trade eating satisfaction so that they can enjoy self-esteem. See page 220.
Eight. Mastering and controlling one’s appetites becomes a way of feeling empowered. This empowerment becomes a form of compensation for feelings of loneliness, self-doubt, and consuming dread and desperation. See page 221 bottom.
Nine. Starvation becomes a way of surrendering to the “backlash” against the rise of feminine power. See 223 and 224.
Ten. Starvation is a reaction to an unnatural hatred of fat. See page 224 and 225.
Eleven. Starvation is an attempt to withdraw from the overwhelming choices that are part of a woman’s new freedom: See page 227.
Twelve. Starvation is a reaction to a woman’s new freedom on the one hand and her lack of political power on the other. See page 228.
Thirteen. Starvation is a reaction to a world that “mobilizes in the service of male appetite.” See page 228.