Body

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The popular toy Barbie has suffered an extreme amount of criticism due to the way in which it portrays the female physique. Barbie is known as a cultural icon in western societies and it has been estimated that 99% of young girls from ages 3- 10 have owned at least one Barbie doll. Fashion model Cindy Jackson, perfectly describes the relationship Barbie dolls have with many other females and has been quoted saying “This is what I want to look like, I think a lot of little 6-year-old girls or younger even now are looking at that doll and thinking I want to be her.” (CITE). The major problem with young girls trying to resemble Barbie’s looks is that because due to her thin stature her body proportions and weight would be physically impossible to exist. Fantasy play with dolls and action figures is a major socialization tool that many young children use. These young girls view their dolls as being alive and serve as a tangible representation of beauty. In the study, Does Barbie Make Girls Want to Be Thin, researchers created an alternative Barbie doll that has normal body proportions to explain how a Barbie doll can affect body image. The key component of this study was the creation of a doll that accurately represents the average dimensions of a woman. For a long time it has been hypothesized that there is a negative relationship between doll size and body image but, there has never been a study that tried to explain this connection until this one. A total of 162 girls were exposed to either Barbie Dolls (unrealistic proportions), Emme dolls (Average U.S. size of women 16), or no dolls (Control group) and then were asked to complete assessments about body image. Esteem levels were chosen by girls from selecting smiley faces that r... ... middle of paper ... ...erviews to listen to what women had to say about their “beauty.” Only 2% of women that were interviewed choose beautiful to describe their looks. “Dove knows that the relationship women have with beauty is complex: it can be powerful and inspiring, but elusive and frustrating as well,”. said Sylvia Lagnado, Global Brand Director of Dove. “We sponsored this study in order to probe more deeply into this intricate relationship. Dove wanted to understand how women define beauty; how satisfied they are with their beauty; how they feel about female beauty’s portrayal in society; and, how beauty affects their well-being.” However, after all of the changes are done you cannot even recognize that the two pictures are of the same person. So much has be physically changed and altered on the women to reach societies beauty ideal that the two pictures look completely different.

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