Saveria Capecchi

The Eroticized Female Body in Advertising and Women's Fashion Magazines

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This article reports selected results of a qualitative study on the spectacularization of the eroticized female body in television advertisements and a selection of women's fashion magazines. In its first stage, this study considers whether this media communication can be considered an example of what, in specialized literature, has been defined as the growing ambivalence in the representation of women. Media represent women on the one hand as «modern», emancipated, professionally active and sexually daring, on the other hand as passive objects of male desire whose bodies must be slender, young and eroticized. The second stage focuses on textual strategies used in advertising discourse, and encouraged by fashion and cosmetic industries, to persuade women to aspire to standardized bodies that are seductive, eternally beautiful and young. The advertising industry constructs the perfect body (a body that is thin, fit, sexy and bears no traces of age) as the symbol of health, success in work, love, as well as sexual and social relations.


  • female body
  • ideals of beauty
  • advertising
  • women's fashion magazines


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