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How might a sociologist account for the high incidence of eating disorders among women?

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  • Essay length: 2273 words
  • Submitted: 07/02/2012
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AS and A Level Media

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90% of all people with eating disorders (such as Anorexia and Bulimia) are female (British Medical Association 2008)

How might a sociologist account for the high incidence of eating disorders among women?

Eating disorders can only be applied to people who have the option to eat, generally they live in a society with an abundance of food, such as the United Kingdom or the United States, but they choose to control their intake of food to a dangerous level. Although eating disorders are considered to be mental illnesses there are several contributing, social and cultural, factors from the external world which drives people to want to achieve a slim body. In post modern society the common appearance of an attractive woman was one of a larger woman because being slim was a sign of insufficient nutrition and poverty. The idea of a slender figure originated in the late nineteenth century within middle-class women. Anorexia was first reported in 1874 in France but it did not become prominent until the past thirty or forty years. In more recent times it has become increasingly frequent in young women. (Gibbens 2006 p253)

The high incidence of eating disorders among

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