Women & Gender Studies: Body Image

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Women & Gender Studies: Body Image

The researches have shown the significant relationship between the culture and body image. The body dissatisfaction is a reality for both sexes and is not a direct result of the environment in aesthetic and cultural patterns. Various studies have shown that looks are an unavoidable part of producing an identity. The concept of self is influenced by dynamic interactions between the self and environment. The process of development is associated with determinants conceptions of culture and society. The idea of aesthetic body has undergone changes as the values, norms and behaviors are changing by the passage of time (Thompson & Gray, 2009, pp. 263).

The concept of beauty has become an element of judgment in order to create a positive or negative notion regarding individuals in their environment or society. This causes the people to form images of them and of the external society. This results in directly influence their esteem and self-concept, as well as in their relationships with others (Cusumano & Thompson, 2007, pp. 701-721). In the recent years, the substantial increase in nutritional disturbances and body image in these stages are of concern in family contexts, health and education.

The satisfaction degree of a person's body is one of the most important factors when developing disorders regarding body image disorders. The history has witnessed that the culture is a regulator of human behavior. Indeed, the individual is socialized within a given culture. It is inevitable and understandable that the set of attitudes, beliefs, values and behaviors those are transmitted from generation to generation and are common to all individuals of the society. Consequently, the individual shapes their actions in terms of what is normal and acceptable within their social environment, in relentless pursuit to meet the requirements of the culture to which they belong (Thompson & Gray, 2009, pp. 263). At present, especially in Western societies, we are witnessing a truly beautiful and deification of the body, based on the evidence that the concept of beauty differs according to ethnicity and society membership.

The problem arises when the ideal body becomes increasingly homogenous in its thinness. It induces more pressure on women to perceive their bodies as comparatively fatter, less attractive and less sexy in relation to media images. Speaking of options that offer images globalized, increasingly homogenous is not only proposed as physical beauty, but of ethnicity, race, and social class which convey cultural definitions of beauty and attractiveness related ideas success. Since the seventies, women have managed to transcend several myths that inequality and kept in confinement, as the myths about motherhood, domesticity, chastity, passivity and yet, it seems that the more obstacles than women, multiply images disciplinarians and strict beauty (Baumeister et. al., 2003, pp. 1-44).

Body image is an issue of great impact on the society and subject of numerous studies and discussions. The concept of body image in both physical and cognitive representation of the body involves and includes attitudes of acceptance and rejection. It has been a key to understanding ...
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