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The Media's Influence on Adolescent Women

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Every day adolescent women are being influenced and affected by the media. The media includes anything from magazines, television shows, billboards, radio advertisements, commercials, newspapers and more. Through the media, women are being exposed to all forms of advertisements, including images that display misleading figures of women. These advertisements do not feature women with large hips, wide shoulders, lengthy arms or fuller figures. Instead, the women found on the front pages of magazines and advertisements are usually cookie-cutter cropped and photo shopped models with thigh gaps, perfect curves, high cheek bones and all the features of a deceivingly perfect looking woman. The media neglects to show the average woman, who comes in various shapes and sizes. The media also fails to display women who may have different body figures because of their culture, the food that they eat, and how the individual was raised. Over time, the ideal body figure has significantly changed and the demand to be thinner has considerably increased. Photos of even the most naturally beautiful models have been distorted and edited through photo shopping technologies with the intention to achieve these unrealistic standards. It is hypothesized that the media negatively influences young women’s perception on body image and that unrealistic images presented through the media has a significant impact on body dissatisfaction of women (Ogden, Smith, Nolan & Moroney, 2011). The next articles in this literature review will attempt to support and verify this hypothesis. Not only are magazine and television models being photo shopped, but average women from the public are also using photo shopping websites and phone applications to retouch any unwan... ... middle of paper ... ...oung women consider a beautiful body figure. This may result in adolescent women taking extreme measures and harming their own bodies to achieve the look that is seen in the media. All of the research found supports the hypothesis that the media negatively impacts the way women perceive their body image. Future research should focus on finding ways that the media can positively influence body image for adolescent women. This could be done through educating young women on self esteem and body confidence, educating young women on how to not be persuaded by what the media is advertising, and lastly through the acceptance of all body figures. If women are educated and taught how to be resilient towards the media and its expectations, they may be able to avoid being at risk for many of the negative effects the media can cause (Snapp, Hensley-Choate & Ryu, 2012).
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