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What can I do with my body? Boys and girls facing body dissatisfaction

By Roberta Biolcati, Rossella Ghigi, Consuelo Mameli and Stefano Passini


The aim of this study is to investigate the role of body dissatisfaction (BD) – conceived here as predicting, predicted and mediating variable – in relation to media influence, body mass index (BMI) and body modification strategies among adolescents, with particular attention to gender differences. Specifically, we investigate, through a multivariated model, the direct and mediated effect of internalization and pressure to conform to aesthetic ideals and BMI on engagement in body modification behaviours, namely eating problems, attitudes toward cosmetic surgery, body art and physical activity. A questionnaire designed to assess all these dimensions was administered to 843 Italian adolescents aged between 15 and 18 years. The findings confirm the available evidence on BD as predicted by a number of sociocultural and personal variables, and as predictive of adolescents’ bodily attitudes and behaviours. Gendered differences in behaviours considered as ‘ways out’ from discomforting feelings about physical appearance are discussed

Topics: Body dissatisfaction, media influence, eating problems, cosmetic surgery, body art, Special aspects of education, LC8-6691, The family. Marriage. Woman, HQ1-2044
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Group
Year: 2017
DOI identifier: 10.1080/02673843.2016.1167748
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