In search of the perfect body

In search of the perfect body

History has revealed to us that everything changes and in particular Art History, shows us the different avatars that cross aesthetic ideals throughout the ages. Thus, if we consider the changes in the ideal of body image, we can say that currently, no young girl would die for having the roundnesses of those women who embodied in her canvases the flamenco Peter Paul Rubens, while it is usual to find girls who, tormented by the obsession of not being able to reach a supposed perfection they become immensely unfortunate.

The feminine ideal does not notice the masculine preferences, which indicate that they prefer them with "guitar form".

In the last years of the twentieth century (and in particular in the last 30 years), the feminine aesthetic ideal has fallen to achieve a body that is not only thin ("like a table"), an indicator of self-control, but also muscular (like that of athletic men); while the aspect expected for man has to do with being strong, intelligent and corpulent, "ma 'non tropo".

And many times, these sociocultural mandates, who point out the slender person as successful and happy, influence particularly vulnerable people or who are going through a time of vital crisis. These people easily give in to external pressures and adapt to a rhythm of life aimed at achieving a figure that can be displayed (the fashion of the belly in the air) without risking feeling marginalized and ... "all right ..." . This has been rooted to such an extent in vast sectors of our community, that Argentina occupies one of the first positions in the ranking of eating disorders (eg bulimia and anorexia nervosa), causing all kinds of havoc on physical health and psychological

To the extent that the personal and different aspects of each human being are underestimated, the massification falls. It has reached such an epidemic of bodybuilding, that no one would dare to question it because it is already part of our collective unconscious. So when the weekly time is not enough to achieve the idealized figure (through all diets "Diet") the person blames himself hurrying to fulfill the "duties" of going to gyms, attend work out classes , to make intense walks in the open air accompanied preferably by a personal trainner, massifying the use of free time and forgetting that each person has their history, their dreams and their own personal resources.

The compulsive attitude in the achievement of these aesthetic ideals (at the cost of losing health, if necessary, neglecting the family, etc.) denotes the price you are willing to pay to respond to a social-cultural imperative (relative to each social group and every historical moment) to feel integrated into a society that will imaginably protect those who respect these mandates.

If "good presence" is emphasized, the "packaged" person is neglected in it. And surely that person will have his tastes, his passions, his aptitudes product of the predisposition, which marked the history that he had to live, and of the dreams that he was elaborating through the epic of his life.

The paradox of our civilization is that while the emphasis is on health, more and more sacrifices are made in order to achieve a physical aspect that guarantees success.

When the self-image and self-assessment of a person depend on body weight and in its forms, there is a danger of being absolutely subject to the opinions of a fashion that forgets that "the essential remains invisible to the eyes"as Saint Exupéry said in" The Little Prince ".

Peter Paul Rubens (15770-1640) maximum representative of the Baroque.
In "Las tres Gracias" oil from the Prado Museum he paints his beautiful wife Elena Fourment, entry into meat and cellulite, status symbol for his time.

Lic. Iris Perla Pugliese Co-director of the Argentine Psychoanalytic Center