Setting The Scene: Overview

Nichola Rumsey and Diana Harcourt

in Oxford Handbook of the Psychology of Appearance

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199580521
Published online December 2012 | | DOI:
Setting The Scene: Overview

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This article provides an overview of Section I of this book. It introduces readers to a range of contexts, perspectives, and influences contributing to the psychology of appearance. It offers insights from a variety of professional backgrounds, including social, clinical, and health psychology, surgery, and sociology. The influence of the private sector is highlighted in relation to messages promulgated by the media, the marketing of new technologies, and in conditions attached to health insurance. Within the public sector, health policies and the prioritization of resources both regionally and nationally limit the current provision of care for those distressed by their appearance. The relative sophistication of the challenges in the UK and the US is brought into sharp relief, however, by a consideration of the issues faced by those working in resource-poor countries.

Keywords: appearance psychology; private sector; media; health insurance; health policy

Article.  1033 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Social Psychology ; Clinical Psychology

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