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Disobedient Bodies

Reclaim Your Unruly Beauty

Front cover of 'Disobedient Bodies' by Emma Dabiri

An unmissable, radical essay from Emma Dabiri, bestselling author of ‘Don’t Touch My Hair’ and ‘What White People Can Do Next’. 

What part of your beautiful self were you taught to hate? We spend a lot of time trying to improve our ‘defects’, according to society’s ideals of beauty. But these ideals – which are often reductive, tyrannical and commercially entangled – are imposed upon us by oppressive systems and further strengthened by our conditioned self-loathing. 

This book encourages unruliness, exploring the ways in which we can rebel against and subvert the current system. Offering alternative ways of seeing beauty, drawing on other cultures, worldviews, times and places, as well as looking beyond the capitalist model – to reconnect with our birthright and find the inherent joy in our disobedient bodies. 

It accompanies ‘The Cult of Beauty’, a major exhibition at Wellcome Collection in autumn 2023.

Date published
160 pages

About the author

Photograph of Emma Dabiri

Emma Dabiri

Emma Dabiri is an Irish-Nigerian academic, activist and broadcaster. She spent over a decade as a teaching fellow in the African department at SOAS. She is a final-year Visual Sociology PhD researcher at Goldsmiths, and author of the Sunday Times bestseller ‘What White People Can Do Next’ and ‘Don’t Touch My Hair’. In 2023 she was appointed as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. She has presented several television and radio programmes, including BBC Radio 4’s critically acclaimed documentaries ‘Journeys into Afro-Futurism’ and ‘Britain’s Lost Masterpieces’, and ‘Hair Power’ for Channel 4, which won a Cannes Silver Lion award. She is a Contributing Editor at Elle and runs the Instagram account Disobedient Bodies.