Media and Body Image

Topics: Advertising, Woman, Mass media Pages: 4 (1083 words) Published: November 15, 2005
"Media and Body Image"

Women around the world, from different age groups and cultures share a common problem; they are not happy with their appearances. Most images of ideal beauty imposed by various media devices make women feel that they do not meet the cultural or social standard. "Women are, taught to see their bodies in parts, and to evaluate each part separately. Breasts, feet, hips, waistline, neck, eyes, nose, complexion, hair, and so on-each in turn is submitted to an anxious, fretful, often despairing scrutiny." (Sontag) Women see magazines from cover to cover in which unrealistically beautiful and skinny girls are collaged on ever single page. Body image is greatly affected by the mass media's portrayal of the thin ideal body type.

First, the media portrays that beauty is a necessity for all women. Unfortunately, the media pushes an unnatural body type, making natural beauty impossible to accept. The average American woman is 5'4" tall and weighs 140 pounds. Where as, the average American model is 5'11" tall and weighs 117 pounds. Society is being brainwashed by the media. In fact, studies show that more than sixty percent of women do not like what they see in the mirror (Murphy). Also, at young ages girls are impacted by the physical appearance of Barbie. Many people do not understand that looking like Barbie is physically impossible. Moreover, the models women see in magazines are completely flawless, and have incredible bodies. The majority of society could never look as good as the models they see. To summarize, women are discouraged with their bodies because the media only show beautiful women.

I decided to pick an advertisement in which the girl is completely naked except for the jewelry she is wearing. The girl is very skinny and wearing a lot of make-up. "Beauty publicists instructed women to inflate their breasts with padding or silicone, to frost their hair with carcinogenic dyes, to make themselves look paler by...

Cited: Brumberg, Joan. "Fasting Girls The Emerging Ideal of Slenderness in American Culture." (1988).

Faludi, Susan. "Beauty and the Backlash." (1991).

Murphy, Matt. "Women 's Health" Eating Disorders.

Sontag, Susan. "A Woman 's Beauty Put Down or Power Source?" (1975).

Opdyke, Leslie. "Women 's Project" Current Women 's Issues. http://www.nwhp.org/whm/2005 (Oct 21)
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