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Flashcards in Chapter 7 Deck (110):

Voluntarily adopted aspects of physical appearance:

Hairstyles, clothing makeup, and body art.


Involuntary aspects of physical appearance:

Height, size of one's nose, shape of one's eyes, or visual disabilities.


What is a blend of both voluntary and involuntary aspects of physical appearance?

Body weight.


Why is body weight both voluntary and involuntary?

People can choose how much physical activity they participate in, but physiological, social, and biological factors can also influence outcomes.


Body Projects

The ways each of us adapts, changes, or controls characteristics of our bodies and whether those characteristics are voluntary or involuntary.


What are the four categories of body projects?

1. Camouflaging projects.
2. Extending projects.
3. Adapting projects.
4. Redesigning projects.


Camouflaging Projects

Body projects that reflect normative processes learned through socialization. Makeup, clothing, hairstyle.


Extending Projects

Body projects that attempt to overcome physical limitations. Contact lenses or cane.


Adapting Projects

Body projects that involve removing or repairing aspects of one's body. Weight loss, muscle building, and laser hair removal.


Redesigning Projects

Body projects that involve fundamental, lasting reconstructions of bodies. Plastic surgery, tattoos, and body piercing.


What does appearance tell us objectively?

Characteristics of individuals involved in particular body projects, such as their age, sex, socioeconomic status, family structure and functioning, academic performance, personality, and psychopathy.


What does appearance tell us subjectively?

Self, identity formation, and how people come to understand themselves and attribute meaning to their physical appearance.


What are the two noteworthy types of body projects that affect physical appearance?

1. Redesigning projects, usually body art or body modification.
2. Adapting projects related to body size or body weight.


Master Status

A category we immediately place people in upon first seeing them, which subsequently defines who the person is.


What makes master status significant?

The auxiliary traits we attach to them. For example, assuming that handicapped people are a strain on society, or assuming that obese people are lazy.


Why was body modification frowned upon by Europeans?

They were part of the "primitive" nature of other cultures.


What did body modification serve as in different cultures?

Rites of passage, ritual initiations, or symbols of sexuality.


Where was body modification prominent in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries?

At carnival side shows.


Why did tattoos leave the carnival community and enter the society at large?

Changes in attitudes towards tattooing.


How were tattoos viewed in the 1950's?

Established means of symbolizing masculinity and brotherhood in working-class communities and the military.


How were tattoos viewed in the 1960's?

Criminal communities adopted tattooing, with male convicts, motorcycle gangs, and street gangs using tattoos to symbolize membership and allegiances.


How were tattoos viewed in the countercultural eras of the 1960's and 70's?

Youth subcultures used tattoos and other types of body modification as "collective representation" of their subcultures and political/social ideologies.


Commodification of body modification:

Range of tattoo-related products targeted at children. Can obtain a tattoo in a shopping mall.


Among youth, which gender is more likely to have tattoos and piercings?



What two central issues are emphasized in the objective view of body modification?

Risk and motivation.


How is body modification viewed in terms of risk?

The presence of tattoos and piercings is associated with a broader range of risk. Those with tattoos are perceived as riskier.


In the past, studies have shown that tattoos are correlated with the following risk factors:

- History of physical, sexual, and mental abuse. Emotional abandonment.
- Single-parent homes, low income, low education of parents, peers who use substances.
- Poorer attitudes toward school, lower educational aspirations, weapons possession, substance use, delinquency, and poor self esteem.


What is calling into question the research that shows that tattoos are associated with specific risk factors?

The fact that there is a growing prevalence of body modification in university and university populations.


Is it conclusive that there is a link between body modification, low self-esteem, and subclinical psychopathy?



Those with tattoos have lower self-esteem. True or false?

False, they typically have higher self-esteem.


What are some possible harms with body modification?

Bacterial infections, Hep B and C, cracked teeth, and problems with X-Rays.


Name some motivations for body modification:

- Aesthetics.
- Pursuit of identity (social or individual).


Why do people get tattoos for aesthetic purposes?

They think that body modification is attractive to the opposite sex, referring to their modifications as beauty, fashion, or art.


How would body modification further a social identity?

May symbolize affiliations with particular groups and contribute to the development of social identities. Can serve as indicators of group affiliations, especially in prison, in motorcycle and street gangs, among elite collectors of tattoos, the straightedge youth subculture, modern primitives, and cyberpunks.


How would body modification further a personal identity?

People wish to express themselves or feel unique. Particularly prevalent among youth.


How would a subjectivist view body modification?

Bodies are not perceived as telling us about the characteristics of individuals who have tattoos or piercings (objectivist), but rather telling us about the development of understanding and meaning, processes of social interaction, and structures of power.


The ___ viewpoint examines identity as the cause of body modification, while the ___ viewpoint examines identity in terms of understanding the self.

Objectivist, subjectivist.


Which type of researcher would investigate the role of body modification in understanding and developing meanings of the self in relation to others and within a broader societal and cultural framework?



Body projects are integral in constructing and and representing identity over the life course. What does this mean?

The physical body reflects the individual's understanding of self and society.


Even though body projects are integral and constructing individual identities, how are they social?

The self is not purely individual in nature, but emerges through processes of social interaction. Those we interact with influence how we understand ourselves and our places in the world.


How is body modification related to our "front-stage" and "back-stage" selves?

We choose the image we want to project, and whether we want body art to be part of that image.


If parents disapprove of body art, what are two reactions?

- To place them in discrete areas with more acceptable symbols.
- To use body modification as a form of protests against the parents.


How do interactions with peers affect those who get body art?

The make them feel better about their decisions and provide validation of self.


How is body art treated in the workplace?

It is kept hidden because of sanctions or because people are concerned about threats to their professional image.


Facial piercings led to doctors being perceived as...

Less competent and less trustworthy.


Tattooing has a long-standing association with...

Male communities and masculinity.


What labels are attached to women with tattoos?

More promiscuous, less attractive, and heavier drinkers.


Established Femininity

A form of femininity that embodies the dominant cultural constructions of what a female body should look like.


How do tattoos contribute to established femininity?

Women get tattoos to make them more attractive to the opposite sex. Just as with breast implants or extreme dieting, it reinforces traditional gender ideals where the female body is an object for men's desires.


Resistant Femininity

A form of femininity that opposes dominant ideals of what the female body should look like.


How do tattoos contribute to resistant femininity?

Tattoos serve as a symbol of resistance. Tattoos are associated with the male community, and women get them as resistance against patriarchal power relations.


Does resistant femininity have to be public in the form of visible tattoos?

No, women can have tattoos that are not visible to the public. There is a negotiation between resistant and established feminist. The tattoos are a form of personal liberation from traditional discourses of gender, yet their concern about possible stigmatization leads them to get their tattoos in concealable locations.


Straightedge Subculture

A subculture whose core ideology is one of resistance to the perceived hedonism and self-indulgence to the modern world. Build lives around physical purity and control of one's body -- no drinking or drugs, no casual sex, no caffeine, no prescription drugs, and no over-the-counter drugs.


What are some common symbols exhibited by the straightedge subculture in the form of tattoos?

- Symbols of lifestyle declaration.
- Symbols of pacification.
- Symbols of indictment.


How are acceptable and deviant body weights determined in medicine?

On the basis of "risks" for negative health consequences. Include waist-to-hip ratio and simple height-weight tables. Most common tool is the BMI.


Body Mass Index (BMI)

A calculation of height and weight that determines an individual's level of risk for a variety of health problems.



(1) A person that has a body mass index (BMI) of between 25.0 and 29.9. (2) According to social standards, a body that is larger than current cultural ideals. A person that has a body mass index (BMI) of between 25.0 and 29.9.



According to scientific standards, a person that has a body mass index (BMI) of 30.0 and higher.



(1) According to scientific standards, ap erosion that has a body mass index (BMI) of 18.4 of lower. (2) According to social standards, a body that is thinner than current cultural ideals.


Healthy BMI:

Between 18.5 and 24.9.


What are the risks of being overweight?

High cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, arthritis, and more.


What are the risks of being underweight?

Heart problems, lowered immunity, anemia, depression, and death.


True or false? Most people who are underweight have anorexia.

False, most underweight people are from developing nations, and are malnourished.


Anorexia Nervosa

An eating disorder that is considered to be a mental disorder. Combination of physical and psychological symptoms that are dependent on the progression of the illness, including: extreme weight loss to the point of emaciation (calorie restriction of obsessive exercise); distorted body image where they see themselves as overweight; loss of female menstruation; growth of fine white hair over the body; yellowing of skin; anemia; heart problems; brain damage; and multi-organ failure.


What has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness?

Anorexia nervosa.


When does anorexia peak?

Transition between adolescence to young adulthood.


Muscle Dysmorphia

A psychological disorder that involves a preoccupation with being too thin or small and results in an obsession with weightlifting accompanied by anxiety or mood disorders, extreme body dissatisfaction, distorted eating attitudes, and anabolic steroid use.


What is another name for muscle dysmorphia?



Which is more common? Muscle dysmorphia or anorexia?

Muscle dysmorphia.


What causes people to be overweight?

Directly, it is the over-consuming of calories. However, there are underlying causes, such as the inability to deal with negative emotions effectively or the way that unhealthy food saturates our culture.


Ego-Psychological Theories

Theories that explain anorexia nervosa in terms of impaired psychological functioning emerging from the child-mother relationship.


Family Systems Theories

Theories that explain anorexia in terms of emotionally enmeshed, rigid, overly controlling families.


Endocrinological Theories

Theories that explain anorexia nervosa in terms of hormonal defects.


Sociocultural Theories

Theories that explain anorexia nervosa in terms of social norms emphasizing thinness, media images, and social learning or modelling.


What standards are used when assessing others' physical appearance?

Social (as opposed to medical).


What type of bodies were considered attractive in a study? Thin or normal?



What types of countries are likely to find slender women attractive?

Developed countries.


What types of countries are likely to find larger women attractive?

Developing countries.


How are overweight people stigmatized?

Emotionally and socially handicapped, lazy, sad, and lacking self-control.


How does the media portray overweight people?

Fashion models are getting thinner and thinner. Most are underweight, meeting anorexic standards. Body size of women in media is different from the average woman in society. Children's shows portray overweight characters negatively.


How is the media portrayal of male bodies more complicated?

Media focuses on a combination of weight and muscularity.


What are some negative effects of being obese?

- More likely to be victimized.
- Less financial support from parents.
- Impact on own perceptions.
- Name calling, whispering.
- Less likely to get hired.
- Get paid less (for women; affect men only at extreme levels).


How does the media act as an agent of self control when it comes to the ideal body?

By portraying the message that the right physical characteristics are indicators of strong morality, while the wrong physical characteristics indicate a lack of morality.


How does commercialization affect body image?

By telling people they are too fat, or not muscular enough. Sell them products such as weight loss pills or protein supplements. Disney had a project aimed at "improving the health habits of children" where they fought off fat villains.


What is the number one cause of death in North America for adults?

Heart disease. Being obese is one of the central risk factors to this.


What are some suggestions that doctors provide to overweight people?

- Reduce calorie intake.
- Join weight-loss program.
- Referrals to dietician or nutritionist.
- Engage in regular aerobic exercise.


What are some non-medical procedures in the medical community that promote appearance over health?

- Smoking for weight loss.
- Amphetamines for weight loss.
- Medications that have severe side effects.
- Gastric bypass surgery.
- Liposuction.


What is an example of government control over being overweight?

Implementing a "fat tax." Taxing unhealthy foods more.


How do communities such as the Interlake region Manitoba manage people who are overweight?

By implementing a program to:
1. Educate children and adults about nutrition and physical fitness.
2. Provide healthy breakfast and lunch programs.
3. Build new recreational facilities.


What are the negative effects of media on girls and women with regards to body image?

Media makes girls and women feel worse about their own bodies. Increases in depression and sadness after seeing models or even female characters on Friends.


What is the caveat to the findings that media makes girls and women feel worse about their own bodies?

There is research that suggests that this effect only occurs in those who identify with media images and personally aspire to them.


What effect do family members have on weight loss/gain?

Girls who are teased by family members about their weight are significantly more likely to engage in binge eating and unhealthy weight loss behaviours in the future.


What triggers a "fat" identity in a person?

External cues.


What are the two types of external cues?

Active or passive.


Which type of external cues has the greater influence on a person's identity?

Active cues.


How do people resist the label of "too fat"?

By creating fat acceptance groups.


What do fat acceptance groups do?

Information about research, provide facts, litigation updates, and advocacy.


What are the two goals of fat acceptance organizations?

1. To promote sound nutrition and physical fitness in pursuit of good health.
2. To remove the social stigma from people who are overweight, broadening the standards of physical attractiveness in our culture.


What is necessary for someone to be labelled socially as underweight?

For them to be emaciated.


What are the primary prevention methods for eating disorders?

Education and awareness surrounding the unrealistic body ideals portrayed in media and popular culture. School and community programs.


What are the secondary prevention methods for eating disorders?

Identifying young men and women who may be in the early stages of an eating disorder. Educating parents, teachers, and coaches about the warning signs and effective means of intervention.


How are eating disorders treated?

Therapy and counselling (including psychotherapy, group therapy, family counselling, CBT). Therapy must deal with both the eating disorder and the psychological, familial, and cultural factors that contributed to the disorder in the first place. Can also take medications, such as anti-anxiolytics or anti-depressants. Support groups or hospitalization can also be useful.


Give an example of how the media controls "too thin."

Asking questions about the health of shrinking celebrities like Kiera Knightley, idealizing Kim Kardashian's ample bottom, negative labels like "Rwandan chic" or "lollipop girls" to girls that are perceived as too thin.


Rank the following female body types in terms of attractiveness: muscular, curvy and fit, skinny, toned athlete.

Curvy and fit, toned athlete, skinny, muscular.


True or false? It is more preferable for a woman to be more muscular than extremely skinny.



What is associated with muscular women?

Fewer feminine interests, masculine gender identity, less intelligent, less educated, less popular, less sexually attractive, less romantically attractive, and less likely to be a good mother.


How is an "anorexic" identity formed?

Through the interactions with people. People who are "too thin" may have food pushed on them, or if they become labelled as anorexic, people may try to avoid them, leading to the person feeling isolated and stigmatized.


What transition happens when an "anorexic" identity is formed?

Transition from primary to secondary deviance.



Websites that do not provide help with and support for ending anorexia, but rather they help maintain anorexia.


What do Ana sites provide?

Photographs of models and actresses for motivation, tips for losing weight faster, listing calorie counts for different foods and the calorie burn from different activities, advice for maintaining motivation, how to dress so others do not detect their thinness, how to fool others into thinking they are eating normally, how to resist active control efforts such as hospitalization.