|Title of host publication||Encyclopedia of Body Image and Human Appearance|
|Editors||Thomas F Cash|
|Place of Publication||Oxford UK|
|Pages||243 - 249|
|Number of pages||7|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|
This article presents a case for the importance of considering body image as a socially based construct. A number of social factors that impact on an individual’s body image are considered, focusing on the comparisons made with peers and media images, concern about one’s body being evaluated, and the influence of perceptions held by others of the ‘ideal body’. This article also reviews the literature on the relationship between body image and social functioning, looking at relationships during adolescence, as well as the impact of body image on everyday social encounters and romantic relationships in adulthood. The relationship between body image and social affect, including confidence in the social domain and social anxiety, is also considered.