Sociological View of Women and Body Image

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The Sociological View of Women and Body Image
You have just bought a new pair of jeans. You think that you look absolutely great in them until you turn on the television or compare yourself to the person on side of you. Today, women all over the world are focused on the way society views them, which has an influence on the way they view themselves. The field known as sociology of the body investigates the ways in which our bodies are affected by our social experiences, as well as by the norms and values of the groups to which we belong (Giddens, Duneier, et al, 2007). Body image is an ideal image of what one’s body looks like or what she wants it to look like. It can also be defined as the value one may put on physical appearance. This may create severe personal problems such as mental and eating disorders, and it may have an effect on sexual behavior. Unfortunately, this issue is mostly found amongst women.

Being that most women have an ideal image of what they would prefer to look like, some of them are willing to do anything to look like the model on the television. For example, many young women become anorexic; they deprive themselves of food and engage in excessive exercise. To them, they are simply dieting and watching their food intake, but in actuality, they are starving themselves and causing complications within their body. In the United States, there has been a tremendous increase of eating disorders since 1960. This problem is really seen amongst young college females.

Although men suffer from eating disorders as well, it is most commonly found in women because of the stress they endure to be physically attractive. This goes back to the idea that society expects women to be petite and slim. On the other hand, men are expected to be muscular and well-developed. As far as race, black women and white women have different views on body image. African-American women often prefer a larger body type, including curves, thighs, and a butt. According...
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