Exposure to Media Images of Female Attractiveness and Concern with Body Weight Among Young Women1

Exposure to Media Images of Female Attractiveness and Concern with Body Weight Among Young Women1 Despite the popular belief that the thinstandard of female attractiveness currently presented inthe media is a primary contributor to the high level ofconcern with body weight among women, experimental studies have not shown that exposure to mediaimages increases women's weight concern. Threeexperiments are reported demonstrating that exposure tomedia images does often result in increased weightconcern among women, but that body dissatisfaction, astable personality characteristic, is a moderator ofvulnerability to this effect. Although most womenreported higher weight concern when exposed to media vs. neutral images, women with low initial bodydissatisfaction did not. In addition, this researchsuggests that negative effects on weight concern mayresult from even passive exposure to media images, but that exposure to realistic attractivenessis less likely to cause increased weight concern. Theethnicity of the participants in these studies reflectedthat of the local population, with over 90% white. The nonwhite participants primarily belonged toone of the following groups; Asian, Pacific Islander,Latino. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sex Roles Springer Journals

Exposure to Media Images of Female Attractiveness and Concern with Body Weight Among Young Women1

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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers-Plenum Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 1998 by Plenum Publishing Corporation
Subject
Psychology; Gender Studies; Sociology, general; Medicine/Public Health, general
ISSN
0360-0025
eISSN
1573-2762
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1018729015490
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Despite the popular belief that the thinstandard of female attractiveness currently presented inthe media is a primary contributor to the high level ofconcern with body weight among women, experimental studies have not shown that exposure to mediaimages increases women's weight concern. Threeexperiments are reported demonstrating that exposure tomedia images does often result in increased weightconcern among women, but that body dissatisfaction, astable personality characteristic, is a moderator ofvulnerability to this effect. Although most womenreported higher weight concern when exposed to media vs. neutral images, women with low initial bodydissatisfaction did not. In addition, this researchsuggests that negative effects on weight concern mayresult from even passive exposure to media images, but that exposure to realistic attractivenessis less likely to cause increased weight concern. Theethnicity of the participants in these studies reflectedthat of the local population, with over 90% white. The nonwhite participants primarily belonged toone of the following groups; Asian, Pacific Islander,Latino.

Journal

Sex RolesSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 6, 2004

References

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