About Face (Paperback)

Women Write about What They See When They Look in the Mirror

By Anne Burt (Editor), Christina Baker Kline (Editor)

Seal Press (CA), 9781580052467, 279pp.

Publication Date: May 27, 2008



Distinctive and unique, facial appearance is hugely important in every encounter we will ever have. From the concept of beauty to the social ill of discrimination, the importance of the face in our interpersonal interactions is certainly known. But have you ever thought about the role your face plays in your day-to-day life, or the way your face may have determined the outcome of an incident from your past?
In About Face, twenty-five writers tackle this question, each using the same simple framework of an opening paragraph that objectively considers what they see when they look in the mirror. Each writer then details an experience that transpired, in one way or another, because of the face they live with: a feature that belies a woman's heritage, a scar that serves as a daily reminder of a childhood tragedy, an unwanted change due to sun exposure or smoking or drinking.
Since we live our entire lives behind our faces, About Face presents a challenge: to consider exploring our experiences from a vantage point we simply don't have access to. This collection uncovers surprising outcomes and truly unique observations about internal experiences as witnessed from the writers' external points of view.

Praise For About Face: Women Write about What They See When They Look in the Mirror

"Twenty-three women, including Hudson valley Resident Dana Kinstler, reflect on their reflections, exploring issues of beauty, ethnicity, aging, scars, makeup and more. Author photos, rounds as compact mirrors accompany each essay. Strikingly few of the writers describe themselves as the camera sees themperhaps that’s the point. A provocative read."
Chronogram Magazine, December 2008

"Comedic, heartwarming and inspiring stories about what a girl takes from the mirror and adds to her sense of self. Ranging from ages 22 to 75, women from various ethnicities and walks of life evaluate the impact societal beauty myths, media and role models have on a woman’s sense of self, identity and even career choice. With an introduction from renowned make-up artist Bobbi Brown, we learn makeup is only your enemy if it becomes a weapon you use on yourself to hide from the world. About Face dares you to do what 25 other women have already done: Turn your face to the mirror and learn, know and love what you see, imperfections and all."
Curve Magazine, January 2008