This book examines the media in relation to body image as a significant influence on self-image and personal wellbeing. It first takes students on a historical journey, starting with the ancient artists who were effectively the media of their day, to show how the ever-changing ideal of “beauty” has never been based on reality. The second major topic is the diet industry and how it sells its products, covering the codes and conventions of weight loss and body positivity websites, as well as persuasive language techniques. Finally students identify objectifying images in music videos and discuss the issues surrounding their use. For each topic, students apply what they have learnt to their own media project.
Dale Sutherland has been a media studies and English teacher. She has a background in film and media, along with a passion for contemporary issues facing young people today. Now living in New Zealand’s Far North, she researches and writes full time.