Body Image

 


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Or is it because women are more “emotional" than men and so are more willing to express this dissatisfaction and thereby give the impression that they are more dissatisfied? Or is it because the media are so focused on female appearance, especially dress, weight and appearance of face and hair that it can only be because of a long and chronic dissatisfaction by women of their body image? Regardless of whether these questions have merit they treat the problem of female dissatisfaction with body image as if it stands on its own. They demonstrate an ignorance of the context within which this problem exists and out of which it springs. This context is fundamentally cultural and historical.

To truly understand the problem of poor body image we must seek to understand its roots. If the history of our culture were to be viewed as the ground out of which our present day experience grows, then those roots go very deep. And the nature of that ground is one that has been steeped in androcentrism. Our culture has been struggling to move beyond its androcentric orientation, but the struggle is not complete. However much we want to think otherwise, we are still very much affected by the supposed inferiority of women as promoted by our still male centered cultures. We need only go back about 100 years to find one of the crystallizing declarations that demonstrate a source of this dissatisfaction.

For centuries many scholars including those who researched human psyche, physiology and sociology were trying to understand the difference in female and male viewpoint regarding human body. However, many questions are still remaining open for discussion.

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