This research explores how to best communicate positive body images to women. This project was intended to improve a blog I created my freshmen year in college called You're Not A Potato where I used original illustrations to tell a narrative about body image issues. The thesis begins with an historical overview of body image issues and finds that women have been dealing with high levels of body dissatisfaction since the Victorian era. The thesis then recaps the role of traditional media as well as contemporary social media and the role they play in imposing rigid beauty ideals on women's bodies. After an analysis of social media culture, it becomes evident women still communicate about their bodies in a negative manner, not only towards themselves, but towards others. To address this issue, I define the Body Positive movement and explore how public figures are using social media to implement Body Positivity. To conclude this project, I utilize my new-found knowledge in body positive communication by impacting my university campus community. I started a "You're Not a Potato" Campaign for Body Pride week with the help of the ASU Wellness Team and designed and facilitated several engaging programs that reflected the values of the Body Positive movement to our students. Through this research, I discovered how our appearance-based culture has stolen self-confidence from young women today, but by the end of this project, I explain how we can attempt to rebuild our culture by effectively communicating self-love and body acceptance in our online and physical communities.
- You're Not a Potato: Communicating Body Positivity in a World of Self-Hate
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