"The Story Of My Body" By Judith Ortiz Cofer, And "Never Just Pictures" By Susan Bordo.

1275 words - 5 pages

Appearance is the first sign of identity and personality that a person shows. The majority of the people are used to judge by appearance instead of personality, but what happens when our personality and appearance are directly connected? Most of us would think that our body and our identity are somehow contradictory, but the reality is another. Our body and identity are both shaped by the media and influenced by some other elements of our society: friends, place, and education. We reflect what we think it is correct in the opinions of others. This idea is expanded and explained in two essays: "The Story of My Body" written by Judith Ortiz Cofer, and "Never Just Pictures" by Susan Bordo.In the first essay, Cofer suggest that our body plays an essential role in our social life. The differences of race, color, and size can create many uncomfortable situations in our adolescence. She tells us the story of her body and the different situations that she experienced. One of them was the isolation that many children suffer based on their look. The media has created a "standard beauty" in our society, and those who do not meet with the requirements are excluded. Judith also suggests that we can overcome all those erroneous judgments by showing other talents like writing. In her essay she states, "I had brains for sure and some talent in writing. These facts were a constant in my life. My skin color, my size, and my appearance were variables things that were judged according to my current self-image, the aesthetic values of the time, the places I was in, and the people I met"(214). All the images created by the media are variables that we can avoid. The environment in which we live has its own definition of what beauty is. In many Latin Americans countries I have visited, a tanned girl was a lot more attractive than a white girl was. The media targets its public, finds a common ideal, and then uses it. Judith mentions that this was a disadvantage in her school were the majority were white girls. She says, "The hierarchy for popularity was as follows: pretty white girl, pretty Jewish girl, pretty Puerto Rican girl, and pretty black girl" (212). There were favorites, and they were the "representation" of the type of school she went. All the problems mentioned by Judith Ortiz are caused by the influence of the media. Bordo who focuses in the way women are portrayed explains all these influences."Never Just Pictures" is the title of Susan Bordo's article on which the media is criticized of manipulating our ideals concerning a women body. The majority of contemporary women models are thin, tall, and pretty. Bordo states, "Eating disorders are also linked to the contradictions of consumer culture, which is continually encouraging us to binge on our desires at the same time as it glamorizes self-discipline and scorns fat as a symbol of laziness and lack of willpower" (238). Advertisers are always telling us to do what we want to do in order to feel comfortable,...

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