The Sexualisation of Nudity

 In For Women

Do you remember when you started feeling the sexualisation of nudity? When did you stop seeing a breast, and started seeing a sexual object? When did we, as society, stopped seeing the nude bodies for what they are and started linking them to taboos? Aren’t we forgetting what is natural, keeping into consideration a sexualisation that a part of society has placed upon us all? Suddenly publishing a photo of a breastfeeding woman has stopped being acceptable as a nipple may be visible.
What hits me even more, is that the sexualisation of nudity is a women’s issue. No heads turn if we see a man with his nipples showing, but the same photo for a woman is not acceptable any longer.
We believe that it is time to stop the objectification of the female forms. The shame that is associated with nudity, because of its sexualisation, is something that lowers women. Women should not just be an object of desire. Women should not be considered vain or intelligent.

…You are SO European…

A couple of years ago, a publisher of a US fashion magazine commented one of our editorials simply with “Oh, you are SO European!“. She told us she took a leap of faith in publishing our images, as they contained “exposed bits“. Please, don’t think for a moment that the images contained anything sexual or arousal, they were just fashion images in which a breast was visible through a pair of sheer garments.
Is this an American issue? Well, if it was, I fear that Europe is slowly adapting to this mentality.

Why is the Sexualisation bad?

Women have become the object of desire. Or better, their bodies have become objects of desire. The sexualisation of women is bad on so many levels, but there is one that I feel is more dangerous than others.
The object of desire, as the sexualisation in generic terms, is not a generic body, but has precise shapes. A woman should be tall, with a tiny waist, a nice hourglass shape kept on by long, slender legs. You can see this in every advert. Where the objectification of the woman body is expressed, it is about this, about a perfect body that is desirable. To top this, its nudity has been expressed through the sexualisation of the nipples, areolae or, God forbid, the sex.
And what do you think this objectification and sexualisation leave the rest of us that are not skinny models?

Nudity and Self Confidence

If you just have to ask me what has nudity in common with self confidence, let me ask you when has been the last time you have looked at your naked body in the mirror without being judgmental. I guess that if you haven’t stopped, you are either an extremely confident person or you have one of those bodies the media define as “perfect” and use as objectification of their product through its sexualisation.
There is a shadow cast on the nude body because it is either considered not good enough, or because the society has created a link between a nipple and sex.
Sexualisation is this: the link between something natural and something with a sexual connotation. The issue is that the sexualisation of the nude in conjunction with the objectification of the female forms is creating a generation of people who will be disappointed in their bodies. I do not wish my child to grow thinking that an exposed breast is linked to sex. I want him to know that nudity is natural.

Two measures

There is another issue in the sexualisation of nudity: a gender gap that is putting pressure and blame on women. The society is telling women that their bodies are something to be ashamed of; however, the same cannot be told for men.

Men are the ones who make the rules, and are the ones who can walk guilt free.

Women, it is now time to stand up and ask for equality!

Free the Nipple

Some months ago, we donated some money to a movement called Free the Nipple. Free the Nipple is an “equality movement” through a film. Their goal is to foster gender equality and the suppression of female oppression and censorship. In the USA, it is illegal for a woman to be topless, breastfeeding included, in 35 states. In less tolerant places like Louisiana, an exposed nipple can take a woman to jail for up to three years.
This are few of the consequences of the sexualisation of nudity and the objectification of the female forms.

And you? Where do you stand on sexualisation of nudity?

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Showing 4 comments
  • Richard

    Your talk about a gender gap is utter bullshit. Look at ads for men’s cologne, or Men’s health, or blockbuster movies. Chiseled abs, pecs, usually a full beard (= testosterone) too. The male ideal is actually harder to acquire, considering the amount of weightlifting, rigorous discipline and protein consumption required. Women just have to jog and starve themselves. A boob job isn’t even required anymore since we’ve shifted from adoring curves and a D cup to adoring thigh gaps and tight butts, accepting the B-C cup that tags along with it.

    • Carlo Nicora

      Hi Richard,
      Thanks for your reply. I agree on the fact that men’s world is becoming more and more pushed to the way we look; however, I still feel that the world of women is more under pressure than ours. The numbers on bulimia and similar things are still extremely a woman’s issue.
      I don’t condone where men are being pushed, but I feel that the pressure on “appearing” is still more on women than men.
      (and BTW, since when “Women just have to jog and starve themselves” has a good connotation?)

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