April Fallon (1990) describes the change in perceptions of attractiveness in the book,Body Images: Development, Deviance, and Change. She writes of the latter Middle Ages that “the ‘reproductive figure’ was the ideal—corpulent, with emphasis on the stomach’s ‘fullness’ as a symbol of fertility. Between 1400 and 1700, fat was considered both erotic and fashionable.” Regarding the nineteenth century, Fallon writes, “At its height in the 1880s, young women in the United States worried about being too thin… Doctors encouraged a plump shape as a sign of health.” This contrasts with our present near-obsession with thinness and provides a perspective that emphasizes the societal factors that may be involved in eating disorders. Similarly, the differences in prevalence in Western, industrialized nations and less developed societies should clearly indicate the social influence on eating disorders. Consider what this means. Are eating disorders solely a product of society? Consider all aspects of the individual, the behavior, the disorder, and the potential causes in your answer.
about 400 words