The effect of media and beauty standards on the body image of women with a visual disability

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Taneka Robertson (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Gwen Hunnicutt

Abstract: “The twentieth century has seen a huge upsurge in the importance placed by western society on physical beauty, particularly for women” (Wood “Perceptions of Feminine Beauty,” n.d.). Fashion industries, cosmetics, and plastic surgeries have all flourished on the importance society has placed on physical beauty. Marketing ploys from these industries often show tall, slender, white women who suggest cosmetics, diet regimens, and other beauty enhancements to successfully transform one’s aesthetic. With the fashion and media industries heavy reliance on visuals, there have been a plethora of evaluations conducted to examine the media’s influence on women’s body image. Yet, there has been little research conducted with non-able-bodied women, specifically women with visual disabilities, and the effects that the media has on their self-image. To determine this, I conducted semi-structured, in-depth interviews, with six college-aged blind or visually impaired women which focused on their lived experiences and exposure to the media. Recruiting participants through convenience sampling, I interpreted the data based on participants’ race, culture, and other common themes in response to their lived experiences. Results demonstrated participants had a positive self-image; contributors included their family, self, and partners. Keywords: disability, visual disability, body-image, women, media

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2019
Body-image, Disability, Visual disability, Media, Women
People with visual disabilities $x Psychology
Women with disabilities $x Psychology
Body image in women
Mass media $x Influence
Feminine beauty (Aesthetics)

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