The Effect of Media on Body Image
Many people will go great lengths to change their body image to whatever the media shows to be normal. In some instances, not only can changing one’s body image make them appear “normal”, it can ultimately lead to greater future success. It all comes down to being normal. Adolescents are being shown what is considered “normal” by media. The children in turn, try to live up to those unreal expectations of their body. The way we have been trying to change our children’s views are completely wrong. Instead of pointing out negative flaws on other people’s body image in the media, we need to solve the root of the problem which is obesity. The media aren’t only affecting adults and teens, but also children as young as nine and ten years old (Helmich, pg.2). Runway modeling plays a big role when it comes to setting these children up for failure. Children are taught that these models portray beauty, and that’s what they should look like when they’re grown up. Kelly Cutrone, owner of People’s Revolution, explains that “Women shouldn’t be comparing themselves with these girls. These girls are anomalies of nature. They are freaks of nature. They are not average. They are naturally thin and have incredibly long legs compared to the rest of their body. Their eyes are wide set apart. Their cheekbones are high.” Children need to be taught that modeling is meant to highlight the clothes, not necessarily the wearer’s physique. Two examples of the media portraying “normal” as a freak of nature are the toy dolls Barbie and Ken. Both dolls project the perfect body type, when it’s actually unrealistic to look like them. “If Barbie was real, her neck would be too long and thin to support the weight of her head, and her upper body proportions would make it difficult for her to walk upright. If Ken were real, his huge barrel chest and enormously thick neck would nearly preclude him from wearing a shirt” (Croll, pg.700). Other examples would be female...
Cited: College Student Journal. Jun2012, Vol. 46 Issue 2, p405-418. 14p.
The Huffington Post, Man Undergoes Extensive Plastic Surgery To Look Like Justin Bieber, Spends $100,000 In 5 Years. 10/19/2013
Cutrone Kelly, Elements of Argument, How Far Will We Go to Change Our Body Image? Pg. 705-709
Jillian Croll, Elements of Argument , From Body Image and Adolescents. P698-703
Joe Kita, Elements of Argument, All to Be Tall, p709-714
Nanci Hellmich, Elements of Argument, Do Thin Models Warp Girls’ Body Image? P705-709
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