Body Image

The third possible cause of American obsession with beauty lies in family pressure. Existing studies indicate that girls are the most susceptible to family pressure to maintain a beauty image and conform to the societal norms in regard to beauty. The obsession with beauty has even caught up with the aged and they are orienting their children towards this. Tattersall (52) has captured this clearly by pointing out that “when your parents are the victims of media messages and pressure from their own peers, they may influence you or even insist that you conform to the same standards.

” Women have most often than not recounted how their mothers tried to shape their perception of beauty and pressurizing them to take care of their bodies to conform to the existing beauty ideals. Like wise, men are taught gentlemanly manners by their fathers and would be criticized for not looking after their bodies. Obsession to maintain certain body shapes such as trimming one’s figure and slimming emanates from family pressure and is seen as the key to looking attractive to the opposite sex. Indeed, the current obsession with beauty in America can be traced to the media, family and peers.

The media however remains the biggest influence in this. The media today is glorifying beauty and is emphasizing on beauty. Being the leading opinion shaper hence the audience has to conform to this trend. The family is also obsessed with beauty and parents pass such ideals to their children. Peer groups are also important in this and peer members have to conform to the set beauty standards to fit in their groups. Works Cited James Curran, Anthony Smith, Pauline Wingate, Acton Society Trust. Impacts and Influences: Essays on Media Power in the Twentieth Century .

Routledge, 1987, 1-40 Lisa La Chapelle Berry. Media and Peer Influence on Fad Diets Tried by Adolescent Females. Retrieved on February 28, 2009 from http://www. uwstout. edu/lib/thesis/1999/1999berry. pdf. Clare Tattersall. Understanding Food and Your Family. The Rosen Publishing Group, 1999, 52 Wykes, Maggie & Gunter, Barrie . The Media and Body Image: If Looks Could Kill. SAGE. 2005, 159 Lubkin, Ilene & Larsen Pamala. Chronic illness: impact and interventions. Jones & Bartlett Publishers, 2005, 185

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