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Similarities in body image in sisters: the role of sociocultural internalization and social comparison
journal contributionposted on 2001-01-01, 00:00 authored by G Tsiantas, Ross King
The sociocultural theory of body image disturbance states that Western women experience pressure from sources such as parents, peers, and the media to maintain thinness. Social comparison theory emphasises the role of comparing one's appearance to others. Body image disturbance; awareness and Internalization of sociocultural messages regarding thinness; and sibling social comparisons were examined in 41 closest-in-age sisters through self-report questionnaires. Sisters showed similar levels of body image disturbance and sociocultural awareness and internalization. Sibling comparisons were negative for younger sisters but neutral or positive for older sisters. Sociocultural internalization predicted body dissatisfaction in both sisters, and body size distortion in younger sisters. Negative sibling comparisons during teenage years predicted body size distortion and body dissatisfaction in younger sisters, and preference for thinness in older sisters.