SOCIOCULTURAL, FEMINIST, AND PSYCHOLOGICAL INFLUENCES ON WOMEN'S BODY SATISFACTION: A STRUCTURAL MODELING ANALYSIS

Authors


  • Michelle Cororve Fingeret, Department of Psychology, Texas A&M University; David H. Gleaves, Department of Psychology, Texas A&M University.

  • Portions of this paper were presented at the 2000 convention for the Association for Advancement of Behavior Therapy, New Orleans, LA.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to: David H. Gleaves, Department of Psychology, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-4235. E-mail: dhg@tamu.edu

Abstract

We explored sociocultural, feminist, and psychological influences on women's body dissatisfaction by examining the manner in which awareness and internalization of appearance standards, feminist ideology, and self-esteem affect body dissatisfaction. A main goal of the study was to test a model of potential protective mechanisms against internalization of appearance standards. The LISREL 8.5 program was used to perform structural modeling analyses on the proposed theoretical models. The results supported previous findings regarding the influential role of sociocultural variables on women's body dissatisfaction. In particular, internalization was found to mediate the relationship between awareness and body dissatisfaction. Feminist ideology and self-esteem were not found to serve as protective mechanisms against internalization. However, self-esteem appeared to directly affect body dissatisfaction.

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