Do you believe you are influenced by advertising?
Do you feel you have a different perspective on body image working in the advertising industry?
What drives the desire by women to be thin?
I've uploaded uploaded their responses on YouTube and linked the questions to their answers. Sarah and Jesseca's responses are consistent with what I found through the survey research. Women in advertising have a greater knowledge of the process that goes into a commercial shoot and the amount of retouching done in editing, but it still perpetuates the same insecurities even with this rational information.
Through this study, I believe that Kilbourne is correct in her comparisons of advertising and it's destructive effects on body image among women and girls. I also found that even among women working within the advertising industry, a lot of that pressure to be thin is is driven by major influencers in their lives which we found to be family and friends. In many ways, women drive other women to strive for this thin ideal. Kilbourne would argue this competition between women is linked back to advertising. I agree, but I also think this relates back to the increasingly networked society that we have become. Every time we go to the grocery store, there are racks of magazines with cover photos of celebrities that have drastically lost or gained weight. We have reality television shows like the Biggest Loser and thousands of "healthy living" blogs where even the average person can document when they ate in a day. There is no time for disconnect because we are bombarded by these images at every turn.
Yes, women working in the advertising industry know the ins and outs of great lighting and retouching, but that doesn't make them immune to many of the same insecurities. The big question is how, as a industry, do we make a change? We discussed this a great length in class, but I think the change has to come from within the industry and through regulation. This idea of "thin = power" and "thin = happy" is so deeply ingrained in the minds of women across the word, that I honestly don't know what it will take to make a change.
This passage stood out to me in Kilbourne's, Can't Buy my Love: