View Full Version : Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History

05-06-12, 08:30 PM
I haven't read this, but the reviewer has, and it sounds interesting!

Lindy West (http://www.slate.com/authors.lindy_west.html)
Saturday, May 5, 2012

I don't have any children yet, so my breasts are still more aesthetic than functional. I mostly use them as a food shelf, a cellphone case, and an in-flight pillow. When I was young and single and had less self-esteem, I used to joke that my breasts were "all I had" (good one, unhappy baby self!), but now that I'm older, I don’t have to rely on them to feel beautiful—for the time being, they're just parts of me that fill my clothes and make my back hurt and, sure, make me feel pretty sometimes. I just don’t think about them that much anymore. Thanks to Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393063186/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=slatmaga-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=0393063186), a surprisingly emotional book by Florence Williams, though, that's all changing. All of a sudden I can't stop thinking about my breasts. Because it turns out they are total jerks.

Read the rest of the review, which is quite informative in itself: http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/books/2012/05/history_of_breasts_by_florence_williams_reviewed_. html

05-06-12, 09:16 PM
Another take...breasts are modified sweat glands


05-07-12, 05:10 AM
'On top of that, breasts (at least in rhesus macaque monkeys, whose milk is similar to humans) can actually determine whether a nursing baby is a boy or a girl, and adjust their milk production accordingly. Milk for girls is thin but abundant, while boy milk is fattier and scarcer—the theory being that girls then must stick closer to their mothers for frequent feedings, thus absorbing their social roles, while boys are easily sated and have time to play and explore. Um, way to prop up the patriarchy by reinforcing gender roles, monkey boobs'.

I had no idea there was a difference!