Beauty is a very important aspect of life, regardless of the angle from which it is viewed. Personal experience, and I am referring here to clinical and psychotherapeutic practice, has shown me that beauty is an element around which revolves most of the concerns and problems of men and especially women. Regardless of their age, women want to be beautiful. And as beautiful as they are, they are rarely seen as truly beautiful. Why? Maybe because in today's world the standards of intensively promoted beauty are very difficult to achieve. Or maybe because the perception of one's own body is wrong. Or maybe because the ideal of internalized beauty is far from its own reality.
Many beautiful women lack self-confidence, and the idealized image of the perfect woman contributes more and more sharply to the sharpening of this phenomenon. I could say that a woman is beautiful simply because she is a woman. But would that be enough? Wouldn't a form of mirroring this beauty be needed, a confirmation from another person? Don't we always need the validation of others? And don't we need our own acceptance?
In this volume we aim to talk about beauty and its price. About how beauty is viewed and what are the mechanisms that activate the desire for beauty in women's psyche. In order to preserve the scientific aspect of the paper, we will support theoretical notions about eating disorders that are often accompanied by the desire to achieve the desired or ideal beauty, descriptions of the forms of eating disorders, their manifestation, studies conducted to elucidate some among the links that are established between eating disorders and the perception of one's own body, studies related to the social and emotional impact that the media has on the structuring of beauty standards. We will talk about the therapy of eating disorders and about the possibilities of "healing" of women who consider themselves insufficiently beautiful. Last but not least, we will present excerpts from literary works that describe in a fascinating way beauty, but also exemplary case studies, in order to clarify the phenomenon that can be called "the pursuit of beauty".
This volume is addressed to everyone. First, psychology students, because they need relevant information about the psychological aspects of all walks of life, but also because here, in these pages, they too can contribute to scientific knowledge, publishing their own works. Secondly, the volume is addressed to those who do not have notions of psychology and who want to find out from appropriate sources what happens to their body, their thoughts, their emotions when they do not feel good in their skin. Or when they feel good about themselves. Or when they fail to understand what is happening to them, what causes their states of inadequacy, what mechanisms are activated when placed in various social contexts, what emotions are born of ignorance and reporting to aberrant standards of beauty .
Last but not least, this volume is about beauty. And beauty exists all around us. But we need to open our eyes and be attentive, to feel it, to inhale it, to enjoy it. In all the forms they wear. This is a book for everyone who wants to read about beauty and its price.
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