Women's body representations across the life course: a comparative study in Southern Brazil

Ariane Franco Lopes da Silva*, Magali Maria Johann, Olga Christina Scandolara Santos, Caroline Brunoni

*Autor correspondente para este trabalho

Resultado de pesquisarevisão de pares


The aim of this study is to observe how women of different ages represent their bodies and the changes they undergo across their life course. The research is based on the theory of social representations, idealized by Serge Moscovici. A total of 201 women between 25 and 88 years old from southern Brazil participated in the research. The methodological instrument consists of a questionnaire containing free associations, sentence completion and selection of images. The processing and classification of the data were done by the software Evoc (2000) and content analysis. The results showed differences between the age groups. Younger women represented the body according to aesthetic references and manifested the desire to monitor the body. Older women related the body more frequently with notions of health, social relationships, and leisure. The memories of a younger body and anticipations of an older one reflected the conventions about ageing. The study also shows that concerns about bodily limitations and age-related diseases were frequent in all age groups and may guide behaviour and attitudes towards the body. The study can inform policymakers on the needs and expectations of a growing ageing sector of the population in Brazil and worldwide.
Idioma originalEnglish
Páginas (de-até)33-44
Número de páginas12
RevistaJournal of Women and Aging
Número de emissão1
Estado da publicaçãoPublicado - 2024

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