Tongue First

Adventures in Physical Culture

Emily Jenkins

Holt Paperbacks

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A smart, humorous exploration of bodily thrills and paranoia from aerobics to acupuncture, strip shows to sensory deprivation.

Your perception of your body will change when you read this book. You will be pulling on your boxer shorts or your black lace bra, and suddenly consider why you decorate yourself the way you do. You will shake up your martini, kiss your beloved, read a dirty magazine, go for a jog, and think about what your bodily behavior says about your soul. And what it is doing to your soul. You will notice the defenses you erect for yourself. Perhaps a tube of lipstick. Perhaps an addiction.

Testing the boundaries between fear and temptation, Emily Jenkins takes us on a journey from ordinary physical experiences (going to the dentist, putting on stockings) to extreme ones (snorting heroin, shaving her head). She interviews people whose bodies are radically different from hers and enters communities where people share unusual ideas about physicality. Sometimes you will recognize your own habits. Other times you'll be shocked or repulsed. Always you will find yourself questioning the ordinary things you do, rethinking your relationship to your body.

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About the Author

Emily Jenkins

Emily Jenkins is earning a Ph.D. in English literature at Columbia University and is co-author of a novel for children, The Secret Life of Billy's Uncle Myron. She lives in New York City and writes for Swing and Feed.

Emily Jenkins

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Emily Jenkins

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Available Formats and Book Details

Tongue First
Adventures in Physical Culture
Emily Jenkins

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Henry Holt and Co.
Holt Paperbacks
August 1998
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780805057010
ISBN10: 0805057013
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 256 pages
$14.95
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