Date of Award

Spring 4-20-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Sarah Heidt

Second Advisor

Orchid Tierney


This fragmentary memoir seeks to examine and deconstruct my overarching experiences with my body and, more specifically, the period of time in which I was anorexic. Spanning almost the entirety of my life from childhood through to the present day, this work concerns both what preceded the diagnosis and followed the “recovery” in order to contextualize my eating disorder within a broader set of experiences and themes. My memoir touches directly on related and paralleling topics of girlhood, womanhood, puberty, motherhood, love, materialism, misogyny, and the patriarchy through metaphors concerning wreckage and destruction. This work as a whole is largely about how love itself is a form of wreckage. It explores the human tendency to obsess over tragedies and destruction. These episodes of wreckage excavate the destructive habits of anorexia and anxiety while concurrently centering emotionally turbulent mindsets in terms of place. Through these depictions of destruction, my thesis simultaneously externalizes the internal, highlighting not only how I interact with place through historical contexts and sensory experiences, but how I perceive the body as a place itself. The body, too, becomes a site of historical contextualization and sensory experiences, demonstrating how an eating disorder is a complicated, destructive force as storied as physical places. The reverberating and consequence-inducing nature of destruction along with the memoir’s breadth of topics accentuates the cyclicality of eating disorders. The memoir’s non sequential narrative similarly buttresses this notion of cyclicality. In that vein, this work can also be read as a departure from the traditional recovery narrative. As the stressors that caused the eating disorder never wholly evaporate, anorexia is a consistent looming threat. This creative work strives to be a generative place for conversations about the body, particularly a platform for genuine and brutal discussions of anorexia and disordered eating.

Rights Statement

All rights reserved. This copy is provided to the Kenyon Community solely for individual academic use. For any other use, please contact the copyright holder for permission.