November 11, 2014
The Influence of Social Factors on People Making Plastic Surgery Introduction
Commercial plastic surgery is a heated topic in modern society. Newspapers, magazines and academic articles have discussed a lot about it. Commercial plastic surgery which, with a limited amount of audience at the very beginning, used to be a mystery field to the general public, has become more and more popular today. It has become normalized as an individualized strategy to achieve a more culturally dominant feminine or masculine appearance in order to become more successful; thus, many people believe that having plastic surgery will lead to true happiness and self-fulfillment. Both men and women are submitting themselves to popular notions of what constitutes a perfect body based on narrow constructions of ideal bodies depicted in popular culture (Turner 2004). In Canada, the most recent data available show us that women undergo 85 percent of all cosmetic procedures (Medicard 2003). In 2003, Canadian women and men underwent 302000 cosmetic procedures at a total cost of $6654000000 (Medicard Finance 2003). This number represents a 24 percent increase in procedures from 2002-quite a difference in only one year (Medicard Finance 2003). This shows a widespread social phenomenon that many people are willing to use it to reconstruct their bodies. There are a lot of researches about body and plastic surgery. For the study of body, Firstly, the body concept of constructivism believes that the boundaries between the different groups of the body is a social product rather the foundation of community (Shilling 2003), and the most important point of construsctivism is the meaning and form of a body is constructed. Secondly, the naturalism theorists view the body in a totally opposite state with constructivism, which sees the body as pre-sociality in nature and highlights the importance of biological body, they believe that self and society are building on the basis of their biological bodies. And in a way, they think that many kinds of social inequalities, such as the inequality of wealth and power is determined by people's biological body, not by accident. Thirdly, the arrival of the consumer society and the rise of consumer culture are important reasons that the body becomes an object of concern. In consumer culture, the body has been given unprecedented value symbols. For the study of plastic surgery, sociologists pay few attention on it, most of time, plastic surgery is mentioned as an accessory when scholars are researching consumer culture or the process of modern women, and there is a large part of research about plastic surgery is viewing at the feminist perspective. Mike Feinstone through his study that the way which body is being experienced in contemporary consumer culture, noticed that the body has been seen as a part of the self, and it can be modified and changed at any time based on people's subjective wish(Joanne 2000). In addition, while feminists have long critiqued plastic surgery, arguing that people need to accept their gendered bodies rather than submit to narrow, rigid patriarchal constructs of femininity and masculinity, some individuals argue that this form of body modification can be understood as empowering (Heyes 2007). Therefore, the current study was designed for exploring why there are more and more people take plastic surgeries. So, the research question is “What is the influence of social factors on people making plastic surgery?”. And I will choose literature review as my method to investigate my research question.
After reading some previous studies, I decided that a qualitative method will be used in the research, which is an effective way to explore the experience and explanation of different individuals. This study will review some literature resources about the standard of beauty in ancient China, the...
References: Turner, L. 2004. Cosmetic surgery: The new face of reality TV. British Medical Journal
Medicard Finance. 2003. Plastic surgery statistics. Retrieved July 10, 2008,
Shilling, Chris. 1993. The Body And Social Theory. London; Thousand Oaks [CA]; New Delhi:
Joanne Entwistle. 2000. The Fashioned Body: Fashion, Dress and Modern Social Theory.
Heyes, C. 2007. Cosmetic surgery and the televisual makeover: A foucauldian feminist
Featherstone, M. 1982. The Body in Consumer Culture: Theory, Culture and Society. London;
Thousand Oaks [CA]; New Delhi: SAGE Publications.
Foucault, M. 1978. The History of Sexuality: An Introduction Volume Ⅰ. New York: Vintage.
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