The importance of the body image and what is considered to be the ‘ideal’ body are two of the primary factors that contribute to the negative affect of the media on the teenage society of today.
The influence of the media on all aspect of society has spread like wildfire especially in the United States. One specific influence by the media is body image, large number of young women and girls look up to people in the media and are influenced by the way they look. Now days you’re appraised on your attractiveness, the way you look, the way you dress, and especially how thin you are. The media’s representation of body image has contributed to the social trend of an unhealthy lifestyle. Women and young girls today are fixated on trying modify the way they look to achieve the perfect body image set by the standards of society. Female’s worry about the way they look starting at young ages from the unhealthy image of the Barbie doll to the
Furthermore, media surrounds teenage girls in today’s culture. It is impossible to escape the sight of media. The media’s constant idealistic beauty is ever present to a vast amount of self-conscious girls. This image of beauty causes girls to have low self-esteem (Clay, Vignoles, and Dittmar). Media defining this perfect body image causes many adolescent girls to feel dissatisfied with their bodies and become depressed. “Viewing ultra-thin or average-size models led to decreases in both body satisfaction and self-esteem in adolescent girls aged eleven to sixteen, with changes in self-esteem fully mediated by changes in body satisfaction” (Clay, Vignoles, and Dittmar).
It is essential to examine the cause of media’s increased influence on self-estem and body dissatisfaction before debating the possible solutions. First of all, as Geissler indicates in the essay, “We live in a fat-fearing and food moralizing culture where magazines, movies, and a multimillion dollar ‘health’ and diet industry all pump out the message ‘thinner is better’.” (330) The ideal of slender
Modern people live media-saturated lives, even children as young as 6 years old, have had some type of media exposure. Extensive exposure to media outlets can lead to body image issues. Body image is defined as, the subjective picture or mental image of one's own body (Smolak 2003). Body image is formed as people compare themselves to others. Because, people are exposed to countless media images; these images become the basis for such comparisons. These mental comparisons, have a strong influence on an individual’s personal perception of beauty. Media outlets create images and pressures about what our bodies should look like; however, sometimes these images have been manipulated, creating an unrealistic expectation of beauty. When an individual believes that their body is substandard, they can become depressed, suffer from low self-esteem, or develop eating disorders.
A very prominent and controversial issue related to media-idealized images is that of eating disorders and eating problems. Eating problems include binge eating, purging, and unhealthy eating problems. These disorders are seen in young adolescents who are at a very fragile stage of life. Teenagers experience bodily changes as well as peer pressure and new experiences of going into high school. According to Dakanalis et al. the media portrays individuals with an extremely thin build for females and a slim-muscular build (i.e., muscles along with minimal body fat) for males is considered to be the cause of body displeasure and eating pathology. There is no solid evidence to prove that the media is to blame for the degree of eating disorder symptoms and negative body-image feelings that many feel, hence the reason it continues to be a highly debated topic. There has although, been continuous research and theories comprised over objectification. This occurs when men and women are sexually objectified. A person is treated as a body, where beauty and attractiveness of a person are important and valued. This theory can be found nearly anywhere because of the amount and variety of social interaction. It is common because of the way media represents body images. The media has ideals of men and women’s body images and individuals are compared to how well
The media is questioned if their presenting a healthy structure of body image for teenagers. The Majority of images portrayed on social media consists of slim, bright and/or flawless people which is known to impact teenagers personally and will feel different due to their difference in weight and appearance. This preview will indicate whether most body images shown online stand as a respectable size to teenagers viewing the image or impersonates a low point of view for the young audience. Over the decades’ social media has produced a substantial indication of how your body must look. The issue is where if this depiction is a healthy or unhealthy circumstance for the teenage perception.
In “Body- Image Pressure Increasingly Affect Boys,” Jamie Santa Cruz shows that the media harms boys and girls in similar ways. Cruz discusses that “boys who were highly concerned with their weight, about half were worried about gaining more muscles…major difference between boys and girls when it comes to weight concern: whereas girls typically want to be thinner, boys are as likely to feel pressure to gain weight as to lose it” (1). This displays that boys feel obligated to look a certain way like having a 6-pack or looking physically fit due to the influence of media. Similarly, women want to lose weight because being skinny is considered to be attractive. Cruz shows that most action figures have a significant proportion of muscles which displays the “improbable body image they set up for young boys” (3-4) because of this, boys are “falling prey to a distorted image of themselves and their physical inadequacies” (3-4). It is presenting men in a way that is unnatural, like how girls and their bodies are advertised. We assume that this is how men should appear and we judge them based on the illusions that the media has created. Cruz displays that “steroids is associated with depression, range attacks, suicidal tendencies, and cardiomyopathies” (4). He asserts that boys are pressured to look what is considered as healthy in society. This shows how the media is harmful to boys because they can use other alternatives, such as
As girls begin to hit puberty, their bodies start to change. Their bodies will gain fat and move away from this ideal thin body image (Kerr 2010). In a study done by Clay, Vignoles and Dittmar they showed three groups of adolescent girls magazine images. Two groups viewed magazine covers with female models who were somewhere between underweight or a little below average weight, while the third group viewed magazine covers with inanimate objects. The researchers found that the first two groups resulted in a less likely report of body satisfaction and self-esteem than the third group (2005). This demonstrates that when adolescent girls are exposed to the media’s thinness they feel like their size and shape is not good enough.
Body image crisis is strong evidence which support the idea that media negatively affect the psychology and behavior of children and teenagers. There is an inherent interconnection between the modern media and body image. Today’s media creates stereotypes of perfect bodies which make children and teenagers who do not fit the image lose confidence in them and become depressed. Perfect women according to modern magazines and television should be thin and perfect men should be with large muscles. Children and teenager are not aware of the fact that images that are show in the media are often edited with Photoshop and that everyone is beautiful in his or her own way. These are the reason why they are influenced more by perfect images in the media
In today’s society, body image among teenage girls is becoming a bigger issue than ever before. The mass media which includes, television, movies, magazines and the Internet is associated with negative body image and is affecting teens. In “How the Media Keeps us Hung up on Body Image” by Shari Graydon, she argues that the mass media is very powerful in convincing teenagers that they need to be thin in order to be accepted in society. Graydon, also takes a stance by explaining how the standards of beauty have been unrealistic, as teenagers are drawn into what they see and try to become what the media portrays. Graydon, also goes on to say that the exposure of unrealistically thin and beautiful female models and actors has teenagers
The world always believed that the media only effect n=body image in kids and while body dissatisfaction is more common among kids; it does affect adults. A study of 456 adolescents from both public and private school that ranged from 13 to 17 years old was done after giving the students an administrated physical and mental survey. The experiment showed that the average participate had already internalized the thin-ideal (Van Vonderen and William 48). It is almost impossible to escape the influence of the media and children are being exposed to these portrayals earlier and earlier in
Social media plays an immense role in the way that stereotypes about attractiveness is conveyed in regards to body image. As Gerbner and Gross wrote in 1976, the cultivation theory states that high frequency viewers of television are more susceptible to media messages and the belief that they are real and valid. The subjection to social media can cause an idealistic view amongst young girls and women alike. Among the mechanisms of human agency none is more central or pervasive than beliefs of personal efﬁcacy (Bandura, 1997). This belief that these body types are achievable can lead to females being dissatisfied within their own skin. The result of the discontent can potentially lead to eating disorders. Body dissatisfaction occurs when views of the body are negative and involves a perceived discrepancy between a person 's assessment of their actual and ideal body (Cash and Szymanski, 1995 and Grogan, 2008). It is estimated that approximately 50% of adolescent girls report being unhappy with their bodies (Bearman, Presnell, & Martinez, 2006). Surveys have revealed that the exposure to social media can cause body dissatisfaction, eating disorder symptoms’ and the concept that thin is “beautiful” amongst young girls and women (Botta 1999; Harrison and Hefner 2006; and Stice et al. 1994). With media influence, the question is the strength of the effect, studies indicate the effects are small in scale; they are likely to operate in accordance with particular differences in
Over recent times, the media has become a prominent part in the upbringing of young people. In particular the manner by which the media portrays body image has changed in numerous ways. Body image is defined as “a person’s perceptions, thoughts, and feelings about his or her body” by Grogan (as cited in Zaccagni, Masotti, Donati & Gualdi-Russo, 2014). There is a stronger focus of what is considered to be the perfect body type and many argue that this is down to media involvement. These articles look in detail at how, and if the media does in fact have some part to play in the views young people take on body image.
The media promotes low self esteem among women because it presents one image of beauty, one that women can not live up to. This causes harm to women’s mental health as they are being compared to a standard of beauty that is simply unattainable. “Body image develops partly as a function of culture in response to cultural aesthetic ideals” (Kim and Lennon 3). The media uses photoshop, airbrushes imperfections, and depicts slim, middle to upper class, white women as an ideal standard of beauty for all women. “The current standard of attractiveness for women portrayed in the media is slimmer than it has been in the past to the point of being unattainable by most women ... Unattainable media images influence women’s satisfaction with their bodies ... because women compare their bodies with these images ... Such comparisons may cause depression, anger, body image disturbance..., and low