final paper - Roberts 1 Unrealistic Beauty Expectations for...

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Roberts 1 Unrealistic Beauty Expectations for Females Everyday we are faced with a plethora of advertisers trying to sell us a many different products. As a consumer it is our responsibility to separate fact from fiction in these advertisements. The advertisers who are marketing products only care about the purchasing affects their advertisements have on people not the long term affects they can have on a consumer’s self-image. In the book Media Society: Industries, Images, and Audiences , the authors David Croteau and William Hoynes defines an ideology as a “belief system that provides underlying images of a society” (page 159-160). These advertisements create ideologies for our society like how beauty should be defined. Women, especially, are affected by this ideology. In our society today there is an unrealistic concept of what beauty looks like and what women should strive to look like. The advertisements geared towards women feature flawless, skinny models that make people do many drastic things to achieve that look. In reality, most advertisements are so edited and twisted that the person you see isn’t what they actually look like in real life. This editing is very common among celebrity advertisements. Celebrities have always been a fascination in our society because they live such glamorized lives. This, in turn, makes people want to model their lives after celebrities because they look up to them. People’s fascinations, especially females, with celebrities have slowly increased throughout history. Now-a-days everything is taken to excess and ‘the bigger the better’ rules our society. Celebrities are the epitome of this notion because they live such extravagant lives. Most ordinary people can never come close to having the same luxuries as celebrities but that doesn’t stop them from trying. Trying to achieve something you most likely will never reach is a very dangerous goal and can have many adverse effects.
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Roberts 2 Today, the beauty expectations and views for women have become so unattainable and dangerous that they are lowering a female’s self-esteem. Self-esteem is important to someone’s body image and if these are both low then that puts someone at risk for harming their health. This problem of unrealistic beauty expectations did not stem out of nowhere. Our social world has constructed, through agency, how women should look. Agency is where an audience constructs certain meanings from something they absorb (Croteau and Hoynes page 20). The problem with agency is that the meanings constructed aren’t always positive ones, as is the case for women and beauty. In a survey that Dove conducted of 3,000 women from ten different countries, only 2% would describe themselves as beautiful (Dye). This is very alarming and brings to notice the problem of self-confidence of women today. Because 23% of models weigh less than the average woman (Derenne and Beresin) and the media glamorize models, females think they are supposed to be as thin as models. Psychology researchers Engeln-Maddox and
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final paper - Roberts 1 Unrealistic Beauty Expectations for...

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