Prometheus Unbound: The Technology of Bodybuilding in the Nervous Age

Nicholas Turse

Abstract


By emphasizing bodybuilding as the technology of physique transformation, this article sets out to explore the social meaning of bodybuilding as a response to the crisis of masculinity that occurred during the latter half of the nineteenth century. Intimately entangled with issues of class, gender, religion, medicine and consumer culture, the history of bodybuilding and the contemporaneous development of a hyper-muscular aesthetic offers a fascinating window through which to view and examine the construction of masculinity.

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