Body & Media Lab

Renee Engeln at Northwestern University

Good Morning America: Obsession with Beauty

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Rebellious Magazine: Body Love

“On April 18, Northwestern psychology professor Renee Engeln released a book that, I’m confident, will blow the top off the body image movement. In Beauty Sick: How the Cultural Obsession with Appearance Hurts Girls and Women, Engeln, a leading researcher … Continue reading

Chicago Tribune: Stop Telling Your Friends They’re Beautiful

“You might be familiar with the Bechdel test. It’s a standard created by artist Alison Bechdel to measure whether works of fiction (movies, usually) accurately represent women. The test asks three questions: Are there at least two women present? Do … Continue reading

Booklist: Review of “Beauty Sick”

“Northwestern University psychology professor Engeln’s sharp examination of beauty sickness reveals its disturbing impact on women of all ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds.”  Read more at

Journal Gazette: Empowering with Fitness

Before Lisa Cowen was a personal trainer and fitness instructor, she was a mom who was trying to reclaim herself and lose the weight she gained after her 2-year-old daughter had died. Read more at The Journal Gazette.

Chicago Tonight: Prevent Teen Obesity, Eating Disorders

When it comes to preventing teen obesity and eating disorders, parents and health officials should avoid focusing on teens’ weight or diet, according to new guidelines by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Healthy eating and lifestyle habits should be encouraged … Continue reading

Self Magazine: Enough with the Plastic Surgery Speculation Already

A photo of Iggy Azalea sparked a heated discussion over whether she’s changed her figure, but the reality is that her body is nobody’s business but her own. Read more at

The Washington Post: Asking Women if They’re “Bikini Ready”

Come summertime, women’s magazines have already spent weeks convincing their readers that there are those who are “bikini ready” and those who are not. They splash on their covers Photoshopped images of skinny women to depict the beach body ideal. … Continue reading

CNN: Why We Can’t Stop Body Shaming

These days, any sign of body imperfection, particularly being overweight, will bring down the wrath of society — that is, the Internet. In recent weeks, comedian Amy Schumer, actor Wentworth Miller and model Iskra Lawrence have all faced digital scrutiny … Continue reading

Nature: Men’s Makeover

Historically, women have been the focus of body-image studies. But as men pay more attention to their appearance, researchers are forming a clearer picture of male self-image. Read more at Nature.