Beauty Sick: How The Cultural Obsession With Appearance Hurts Girls And Women

Hardcover | April 18, 2017

byRenee, Phd Engeln

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An award-winning Northwestern University psychology professor reveals how the cultural obsession with women's appearance is an epidemic that harms women's ability to get ahead and to live happy, meaningful lives, in this powerful, eye-opening work in the vein of Naomi Wolf, Peggy Orenstein, and Sheryl Sandberg.

Today’s young women face a bewildering set of contradictions when it comes to beauty. They don’t want to be Barbie dolls but, like generations of women before them, are told they must look like them. They’re angry about the media’s treatment of women but hungrily consume the very outlets that belittle them. They mock modern culture’s absurd beauty ideal and make videos exposing Photoshopping tricks, but feel pressured to emulate the same images they criticize by posing with a "skinny arm." They understand that what they see isn’t real but still download apps to airbrush their selfies. Yet these same young women are fierce fighters for the issues they care about. They are ready to fight back against their beauty-sick culture and create a different world for themselves, but they need a way forward.

In Beauty Sick, Dr. Renee Engeln, whose TEDx talk on beauty sickness has received more than 250,000 views, reveals the shocking consequences of our obsession with girls’ appearance on their emotional and physical health and their wallets and ambitions, including depression, eating disorders, disruptions in cognitive processing, and lost money and time. Combining scientific studies with the voices of real women of all ages, she makes clear that to truly fulfill their potential, we must break free from cultural forces that feed destructive desires, attitudes, and words—from fat-shaming to denigrating commentary about other women. She provides inspiration and workable solutions to help girls and women overcome negative attitudes and embrace their whole selves, to transform their lives, claim the futures they deserve, and, ultimately, change their world.

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From the Publisher

An award-winning Northwestern University psychology professor reveals how the cultural obsession with women's appearance is an epidemic that harms women's ability to get ahead and to live happy, meaningful lives, in this powerful, eye-opening work in the vein of Naomi Wolf, Peggy Orenstein, and Sheryl Sandberg.Today’s young women face ...

From the Jacket

We live in a beauty-sick world that teaches women to believe beauty matters most. Let’s change that.Today’s girls and women embody a bewildering set of contradictions. They don’t want to be Barbie dolls, but, like generations before them, feel pressure to look like them. They’re angry about the media’s treatment of women, but often con...

Format:HardcoverDimensions:400 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.25 inPublished:April 18, 2017Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062469770

ISBN - 13:9780062469779

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“Renee Engeln...argues that our obsession with women’s looks amounts to a society-wide psychological illness...The book indicts social and news media in helping to create beauty sickness by drawing on research and interviews with real-world girls and women.”