Irina Tarnovsky

Article Title

Dangerous Desires


This article advocates a change to the media’s current portrayal of women. In doing so, this article advocates regulations to the kinds of advertisements which may appear in teen magazines. Currently, teen magazines feature pictures of women which are both: unnaturally thin and digitally altered to unnatural proportions. Consequently, the viewing of these advertisements encourages adolescent women to engage in dangerous behaviors associated with eating disorders.

Over seven million American women are affected by, or suffer from, an eating disorder, the majority of which are between the ages of thirteen and nineteen. Although there are a number of factors that contribute to the occurrence of an eating disorder, one thing is clear: the media’s portrayal of the perfect body shape, adds to the occurrence of eating disorders in adolescent girls.

The concept of regulating such advertisements has been examined by researchers, psychologists, and sociologists, all of whom suggest a link between the media’s portrayal of women and eating disorders in adolescent girls. This article will be the first to clearly demonstrate how advertisements in teen magazines fall outside the protections of the First Amendment, thereby legally justifying regulations. As such, this article will be the first of its kind to provide the legal justifications for regulating the media’s portrayal of women.

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