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Baby You Got Me in the Shape I’m In: Factors Which Determine Body Image Research Paper

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Updated: Oct 5th, 2021

Introduction

The study aims at estimating the effect of media on body image and depression among women. The author argues that though body image is shaped by individual personality, media has a huge contribution in developing this image among women. In media, the author argues that magazine, in particular, has the maximum contribution in shaping the body image among women. Further, the research shows some interesting findings regarding the relationship between weight and the personality of women.

Set of hypotheses

The literature argues that media creates stereotypical body image which is usually a ‘thinner the better’ concept and this has a profound effect on female viewers. This leads to the first hypothesis of the study which states that media directly affects perception of body image. The researchers further hypothesized that personality traits self-esteem, degree of importance attached to appearance, and degree of importance to relationships will have a direct effect on the perception of body image. The next set of hypotheses were influenced by demographic factors such as age, gender, and weight, and BMI (body mass index) having a direct effect on body image.

90 respondents were surveyed, of which 64.5% were female and the rest were male. The mean age of the sample group was 20 years. Their mean height was 173 cm and 166 cm for men and women respectively and their weight was 72 kg and 66kg for men and women respectively.

The response was collected on the Likert scale. Data were collected through personal interviews and questionnaire responses. The hypothesis was analyzed by a series of multiple regressions.

Methods

For the measurement of the dependent variables, the researchers employed the following methods. Body Image was measured as a multi-item construct. This was done by asking the respondents about the body part which they would like to change. The main components of factor analysis revealed three factors explaining 52% of the variance. The first was satisfaction with Body shape, the second dimension measured satisfaction with upper features and the third dimension measured satisfaction with minor features. Conbrach’s alpha for these variables was calculated to be.87 and a lower score was indicative of appearance to be a major concern for respondents. Factor analysis revealed three dimensions, “Social Confidence”, “Self-Worth”, and “Respect”. The next questions asked the respondent to choose the mediums considered most enjoyable and reliable. This was followed by measures the exposure to the respective mediums. Finally, a series of questions measured the perceived pressure exerted on the respondent from the three different mediums (television, magazines, and the internet) concerning their physical appearance, and whether each media was considered as reliable. Conbrach’s alpha for these items was.63. A lower score showed that respondents attached a great deal of importance to relationships.

Results

The study showed that in the case of body shape, foe respondents who showed lower satisfaction could be associated with greater interest in magazines and feminine interest in internet advertisements. Put differently, the less factual and more interactive the medium, the more likely it would harm the perception of body image. Further, the loudness of television advertisements hurts satisfaction. In the case of body shape, more was the feminine interest in internet advertisements, lower was the satisfaction among women with their body shape. The study concludes that personality and media may equally influence the individual perception of body image.

References

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Brown, J.D., Halpern, C.H., and L’Engle, K.L. “Mass media as a sexual super peer for early maturing girls”, Journal of Adolescent Health 36, 2005: pp.420–427.

Dittmar, H, Halliwell, E, and Ive, S. “Does Barbie Make Girls Want to Be Thin? The Effect of Experimental Exposure to Images of Dolls on the Body Image of 5- to 8-Year-Old Girls”, Developmental Psychology, Vol. 42, No. 2, 2006: pp. 283–292.

Cohen, S. “Media Exposure and the Subsequent Effects on Body Dissatisfaction, Disordered Eating, and Drive for Thinness: A Review of the Current Research” Mind Matters: The Wesleyan Journal of Psychology Vol. 1, 2006: pp. 57-71.

Okunna, C.S. “Portrayal of Women in Nigerian Home Video Films: Empowerment or Subjugation?” Department of Mass Communication, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Nigeria. 1996.

Fredrickson, B. L. Roberts, T.A. Noll, S. M. Quinn D.M. and Twenge, J.M. “That Swimsuit Becomes You: Sex Differences in Self-Objectification, Restrained Eating, and Math Performance” Journal of Personality and Social PsychologyVol. 75, No. 1, 1998: pp.269-284.

Martin, C.K. “Girls, Video Games, and the Traditional Stereotype of Female Characters” Communication 270, 1999.

Peterson, R. and Jun, M. “Eating Disorders and Advertising Effects: an Exploration” Academy of Marketing Studies Journal, Volume 8, Number 1, 2004.

Ward, S. Buck, M. Hofman, B. Tanjic, S. and Whyte D. “Baby You Got Me in the Shape I’m In: Factors Which Determine Body Image” ANZMAC 2000 Visionary Marketing for the 21st Century: Facing the Challenge 2000.

Stice, E. and Whitenton, K. “Risk Factors for Body Dissatisfaction in Adolescent Girls: A Longitudinal Investigation”, Developmental Psychology, Vol. 38, No. 5, 2002: pp. 669–678.

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IvyPanda. (2021, October 5). Baby You Got Me in the Shape I’m In: Factors Which Determine Body Image. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/baby-you-got-me-in-the-shape-im-in-factors-which-determine-body-image/

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"Baby You Got Me in the Shape I’m In: Factors Which Determine Body Image." IvyPanda, 5 Oct. 2021, ivypanda.com/essays/baby-you-got-me-in-the-shape-im-in-factors-which-determine-body-image/.

1. IvyPanda. "Baby You Got Me in the Shape I’m In: Factors Which Determine Body Image." October 5, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/baby-you-got-me-in-the-shape-im-in-factors-which-determine-body-image/.


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IvyPanda. "Baby You Got Me in the Shape I’m In: Factors Which Determine Body Image." October 5, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/baby-you-got-me-in-the-shape-im-in-factors-which-determine-body-image/.

References

IvyPanda. 2021. "Baby You Got Me in the Shape I’m In: Factors Which Determine Body Image." October 5, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/baby-you-got-me-in-the-shape-im-in-factors-which-determine-body-image/.

References

IvyPanda. (2021) 'Baby You Got Me in the Shape I’m In: Factors Which Determine Body Image'. 5 October.

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