Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)

The weight of obesity: hunger and global health in postwar Guatemala

Book launch by Emily Yates-Doerr

18Apr2016 15:00 - 17:00


Anthropologist Emily Yates-Doerr presents her book, containing poignant stories of how obesity is lived and experienced by Guatemalans who have recently found their diets—and their bodies—radically transformed.

A woman with hypertension refuses vegetables. A man with diabetes adds iron-fortified sugar to his coffee. As death rates from heart attacks, strokes, and diabetes in Latin America escalate, global health interventions increasingly emphasize nutrition, exercise, and weight loss—but much goes awry as ideas move from policy boardrooms and clinics into everyday life.

Based on years of intensive fieldwork Emily Yates-Doerr challenges the widespread view that health can be measured in calories and pounds, offering an innovative understanding of what it means to be healthy in postcolonial Latin America. She vividly describes how people reject global standards and embrace fatness as desirable.

Booklaunch commentaries

  • Marianne de Laet, Associate Professor of Anthropology & STS, Harvey Mudd College
  • Jeannette Pols, Associate Professor of Medical Ethics, Amsterdam Medical Center / Socrates Professor AISSR
  • Simon Cohn, Reader in Medical Anthropology, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
  • Amade M’charek, Professor of Anthropology of Science, University of Amsterdam

Book launch Chair

  • Annemarie Mol, Professor of Anthropology of the Body, University of Amsterdam

Drinks afterwards.

About the author

Emily Yates-Doerr is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Amsterdam. Her research attends to colissions between global and indigenous politics, practices of translating between research and policy in the food sciences, and the methods of engaged anthropology.

Location: REC B 5.12

  • Roeterseilandcampus - gebouw B/C/D (ingang B/C)

    Nieuwe Achtergracht 166 | 1018 WV Amsterdam
    Receptie B: 525 5340 Receptie C: 525 5470

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Published by  AISSR