Governing the dieting self: Conducting weight-loss via the internet

Clarke, Andrew (2015) Governing the dieting self: Conducting weight-loss via the internet. Journal of Sociology, 51 3: 657-673. doi:10.1177/1440783314522869


Author Clarke, Andrew
Title Governing the dieting self: Conducting weight-loss via the internet
Journal name Journal of Sociology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1741-2978
1440-7833
Publication date 2015-09-01
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1177/1440783314522869
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 51
Issue 3
Start page 657
End page 673
Total pages 17
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher SAGE Publications
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Abstract Recent critical scholarship on bodyweight issues has taken a step back from debates regarding the veracity of claims made about the ‘obesity epidemic’ and its dietary causes and solutions. Instead, researchers have begun to explore the ‘truth effects’ of obesity discourse: how this discourse is translated into interventions that target how people relate to, and act upon, themselves and others. The study contributes to this scholarship through an analysis of a commercially distributed online weight-loss program, where participants are required to govern their own dietary conduct with the assistance of tools and resources supplied via the internet. Adopting a governmentality approach, I demonstrate that the program’s operationalisation of bodyweight and dietary discourse in its attempt to affect the dietary conduct of dieters is dependent upon techniques for governing conduct ‘at a distance’ that are derived from broader innovations in the techniques through which power is exercised in ‘advanced liberal’ societies.
Keyword Advanced liberalism
Dieting
Governmentality
Internet research
Online methods
Weight-loss
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Social Science Publications
 
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