7-1 | Getting Physical: The Rise of Fitness Culture in America

Book Review

Getting Physical: The Rise of Fitness Culture in America

Shelly McKenzie
Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 2013. Introduction, images, notes, bibliography, index. 254 pp. $34.95 cloth. ISBN: 97807006196061

Making the American Body: The Remarkable Saga of the Men and Women Whose Feats, Feuds, and Passions Shaped the Fitness Industry

Jonathan Black
Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press, 2013. Introduction, images, notes, index. 223 pp. $27.95 cloth. ISBN: 97808032143705

by Kurt Kemper

First Paragraph:

The recent American worry about obesity, the lack of exercise, and unhealthy diets has elevated the subject of public fitness to a level of national discourse not seen since the early Cold War–era debates over our physical softness. Two recent works, Jonathan Black’s Making the American Body: The Remarkable Saga of the Men and Women Whose Feats, Feuds, and Passions Shaped Fitness History and Shelly McKenzie’s Getting Physical: The Rise of Fitness Culture in America attempt to inform these debates about public fitness by illustrating the arc of America’s fitness culture and its origins and role in American society.