Image Of Women And Body Image By Nasa Begum

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In Western culture, a woman’s body has always been closely examined, as there is the ideology that a woman’s beauty and worthiness is rooted from her physical appearance. Therefore, societal ideas of what is acceptable for a woman’s body are thrown around in discussion, often perpetuating the idea that a woman’s body should be slim, have a small waist, big breasts, wide hips, and clear skin. What comes across very blatant with these ideas is that ultimately, the acceptable body for a woman is an abled-body, excluding women with physical disabilities as a whole. Due to societies harmful ideas on women’s bodies, as well as the idea that the perfect body is a “normal” or abled-body, women with physical disabilities find themselves struggling …show more content…

This stigma also includes notions that physical disabilities should be “hidden or presented as something to be avoided, corrected and pitied”, according to scholars George Taleporos and Marita McCabe. These stigmas are incredibly damaging to women with physical disabilities and works in the favor of women who are able-bodied, thus granting them more acceptance, praise and representation of their bodies in most aspects of everyday life. Society’s notion of body image negatively impacts the lives of women with physical disabilities, damaging their self-esteem. According to Nasa Begum, these societal ideals influenced on women with physical disabilities to express, ““I had this image of myself as a big blob, no shape just dead meat.” (Carrillo, et al.,1982: 26)” (76). Begum also notes another woman with physical disabilities saying, “”I try hard to accept my body and improve on it but it’s a losing battle. I’m bombarded with pictures of beautiful bodies and I just cannot compete, so I try to hide my flaws. (Morris, 1989: 61)”” (76). Unfortunately, because of society’s body image for women, along with the stigma that the bodies with disabilities are unacceptable, these women have a hard time finding confidence in themselves. The images of the ideal beautiful bodies seen all over from all forms of media are internalized by these women and they have even more of a difficult time being comfortable in their own skin (Begum 76).

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