The UCLA Body Project I: Gender and Ethnic Differences in Self-Objectification and Body Satisfaction Among 2,206 Undergraduates
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This study examined whether objectification theory is useful for understanding gender, body mass, and ethnic differences in body satisfaction among 2,206 US undergraduates who completed a body image survey. Women reported lower body satisfaction than men (d = .37) and this was true across the majority of the BMI continuum. Very slender men, however, were less satisfied than very slender women who approached the female thin-ideal. Differences in body satisfaction among White, Asian, and Hispanic participants were small to moderate (ds = .18 to .45). Consistent with the prediction that self-objectification has particularly negative effects on women who deviate from the slender White ideal, the association between body dissatisfaction and appearance surveillance was strongest for heavier and minority women.
KeywordsBody image Ethnicity Objectification
The authors are grateful to the UCLA Graduate Division, the Center for Culture, Brain, and Development, and the Departments of Psychology and Communication Studies for providing financial support to the first author. We are also grateful for support from the UCLA Institute of American Cultures, who provided a research grant for this project to the first author. We would like to thank Eric Kroskrity, Misoo Lee, Andrea Niles, Taylor Rhoades, and Leila Sadeghi-Azar for their assistance with this project and manuscript.
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