Eating to Excess: The Meaning of Gluttony and the Fat Body in the Ancient World

Eating to Excess Hill (religion, U. of Northern Iowa) explores the historical roots of the symbolic relationship between fatness, gluttony, and immorality, beginning with biblical times and ending with Pope Gregory the Great’s articulation of the seven deadly sins in the sixth century CE. Examining ancient meanings of fat bodies and gluttons provides insight into how Western culture has constructed ideas about self-control and moderation, how fat bodies and gluttons are distinguished and defined, and how bodily behavior both shapes and reflects gendered assumptions about the body. Annotation ¬©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

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