The rules have this to say about the body slot:
- The Body slot is reserved for Equipment cards bearing the
- Alternatively, it can hold the specific Equipment card that
is listed on it. It is then considered to be equipped in Hand,
representing a special piece of Equipment that this Survivor
can draw and use in the blink of an eye.
Different interpretations of that wording could lead different people to understand it differently, and the base game doesn't have that much in the way of different equipment, and all of the base game heroes had low tier body slot item options, so the answer becomes more clear when looking at some of the expansion heros and kickstarter packs.
Clovis here can hold a shield in his body slot, it shows the image for a basic shield, but it's understandable to think that means he can hold any shield.
Billy makes it a lot more clear, when his body slot item is specifically a Norse Shield, not just the ability to hold a shield.
Looking at these three, each able to hold a different kind of dagger in their body slot helps clarify it even more. The most clear way to see this is looking at mage heroes that can hold spells in their body slot - there is no spell that's name can be confused for a category, and every mage hero has a specific named spell, like mana blast, healing, or speed, that can be put into that slot, when the game says shield it means only the basic shield, no other kinds of shields can be used in the body slot.