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Reviews

"Lowe brightly illuminates a pressing subject for the first two generations of American college women: their appearance."

"A compelling account of life on campus for the female 'student body' over many decades of radical change... Lowe's greatest strength is in her ability to navigate a wealth of archival sources, find fascinating elements within them, and weave these sources effortlessly into her own language and claims."

"Lowe has compiled a collection of fascinating data on the ways U.S. college women saw themselves and were seen by others in the period from 1875 to 1930."

"Lowe innovatively uses young women's diaries, letters, correspondence, and other archival 'student voices' to illustrate the distance between cultural ideals of beauty and the reality of women's lived experience."

"The comparative history of institutions often yields rich results, as Margaret Lowe demonstrates in her study of women's body image and behavior at three colleges—Smith, Spelman, and Cornell—between 1895 and 1930."

"Lowe uses the concepts of gender, race, and class as she explores the origins of body image through the lens of academia."

"An excellent book that advances our understanding of gender and race, and the importance of body not only on college campuses, but also in the wider society."

"Lowe has produced a creatively researched analysis that provocatively extends the meaning of the female collegiate experience into larger social arenas."

"Margaret Lowe has taken up a fascinating topic with both care and creativity. Investigating the increasing importance of body image to college women in nineteenth- and twentieth-century America, she traces changes in social and scientific ideals of female health and beauty, notions of femininity, and women's attitudes towards their own bodies. Lowe also makes a compelling case for the critical importance of race in this process. Looking Good is well conceived, carefully researched, and clearly written and argued."