* Me, My Hair, and I by Elizabeth Benedict


Me, My Hair, and I: Twenty-seven Women Untangle an Obsession is an interesting cultural artifact that shows the heavy cultural weight of what women are supposed to do with their hair — and how women can spend way too much money, time, and especially brain power on taking care of their hair and worrying, obsessively, about it. I’m thinking that a couple of chapters would be enough to convince the average man that (1) women worry about things he did not know could be worried about and (2) hair products are a great business.

And that’s the problem of the book. A few chapters are fine; the whole thing is too much. Also, the various contributions vary greatly. Some are obsessive, meaningless autobiographies centered on the various follicular challenges of the writers (many of whom are quite accomplished and successful otherwise; the contrast is painful). Others are wonderful analyses of how easy it is to get sucked into the obsession of the “right” hair.

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