Image. What is it? Like anything, different people interpret image in different ways. Hence, image has a varied amount of interpretations, for its definitions. Interpretations of this word include how a person looks, acts, reputation etc. etc. Many more can be added to this list. Definition given by the dictionary, of image is: –
” a picture or statue of a person, or the appearance of something as seen in a mirror or through a lens etc. a person or thing that is very much like another reputation”
Society in general, takes image as an indicator of what at person like is. Image of a person is interpreted in different ways by society. It maybe how a person physically looks, type of clothes they may where, type of music they may listen to, personality, friends they may have, and so on. An example of this in reality would be if someone saw a person who was wearing baggy clothes, who had long hair and was skating they would deduce they also like rock music, and are ‘moshers’, if the person who saw this doesn’t like rock music or skating, they would probably not want themselves to be associated with this person all because of the image they have. Everyone presents an image, and the above are the things which society uses to create an image of an individual from what they present.
Image and society, why is there a link? In a recent survey carried out, 60% of the population use image and not personality of a individual to decide if they like them, and if so how much. Society and image then leads onto categorisation. Generally society use image to place everyone in a group. Reason for this who knows? It may be people want to know what everyone else is like, and if people group others they can decide on thins like who they like or not, and also people could decide on things like who they want to be with. According to another survey in social behaviour, 70% of the people surveyed admitted to grouping people. The most popular group people come up with to categorize people are ‘Townie and Moshers’. This is a classic example of grouping.
‘Townies’, are thought of to listen to dance music or urban music (because they think it’s cool), they wear ‘townie gear’, which is trackies and other things with huge sport labels written on them, and they boast about smoking weed.
Whereas ‘Moshers’ are stereotyped as listening to rock (mosher) music, like the colour black, have long hair, wear baggy clothes, take lots of drugs and only sporting activity they may do is skating.
Image can be a positive influence because it could provide good role models to the public. People may look up to the image an individual may have, and it may influence them, if the role model is good this could be good for individuals, as it may make them better people. This can also have a negative effect on people, if the role model is bad.
Image can also be bad because some may become to conscious about their image that they are presenting, and some people may find it uncomfortable being in public because of this reason. Another reason why image can be bad is that when society categorises, prejudice may be created as people will listen to anything and like or dislike people because of an image they may have, as their obviously will be minority groups, which generally people don’t want to exist. People are different so they may be discriminated against, and people would be prejudice against, because they don’t fit into usual categories.
It is a fact today’s society use image and not personality of someone to rate them. It’s like a the worlds a huge playground, and one child sees other and immediately shouts out “you’re a geek”, and doesn’t become friends with them all because apparently this other child looks like a geek. This point has a negative effect on society. As some people spend too much time worrying about image, also some people are left out, and discriminated because they may have a bad image, but they may still be good people.