Home » Odds and Ends » What’s The Deal With That?: Nudity in the Name of Female Empowerment

What’s The Deal With That?: Nudity in the Name of Female Empowerment

Ok, so I’m sure there will be plenty of you who disagree with the opinions I am about to put forth, but I think it is about time we have a discussion about some of the nonsense that is being endorsed and supported, with the justification that it is “a woman’s right.”

Another day has dawned and so dawns yet another ad campaign/promotional photo featuring a brazenly, naked woman. In fact, today I was subjected to not one, but two incidences of this. First was that of Madonna with her breasts out and about with not a care in the world, as she poses for Interview Magazine. As I sat their watching E! News I couldn’t help but notice Jason Kennedy, who is very openly Christian, as he fumbled over how to respond to the image. I was glad someone on the panel was at a loss for words, because the ladies of the panel, were more than happy to support Madonna, touting that she is empowering woman, because she is 56 years old and not afraid to show off her body. They also threw in that it was the magazine’s art issue, and that the photo was a work of art…. Really? Here is a link to the photo, so feel free to discern its artistic quality (it is censored, but view with caution). http://www.eonline.com/news/602298/madonna-poses-topless-for-interview-see-the-pics

Then there was the second run in I had with unnecessary nudity. There I was scrolling through pinterest, and wham! completely naked woman! This was shared by Instyle magazine, stating “He’s Bringing Sexy Back!”, in reference to Alexander Wang, as the photo is in fact an ad for the designer’s new line of jeans.  Hrrmm.. if one is to sell jeans wouldn’t it be more effective to show how they fit on a woman’s body rather than have them crumpled around her ankles? There is a second photo where  it is simply a crotch shot of the model touching herself; not sure which one is more “sexy”. Again here is the link (viewer discretion  advised). http://news.instyle.com/2014/12/03/hes-bringing-sexy-back-alexander-wang-announces-denim-line-with-a-steamy-ad-campaign/

And then of course last, but never ever least (*sarcastic eye roll*), there are those oh so morally sound Kardashians. By now we probably have all seen Kim’s oiled up derriere on the cover of Paper magazine, seeing as national news stations even felt it appropriate to share her nudity with the masses. She also posed full frontal for the magazine, but thankfully that was considered less acceptable and was not promoted as much, however with the simplest of search cues, the photo is easily found on the internet.  Not to be out done, Kourtney Kardashian recently posed completely naked for DuJour magazine, condoning it acceptable due to her being pregnant.

Day after day celebrities and fashion designers, news outlets and mass media, are telling people that brazen nudity is not only acceptable, but also a form of empowerment. I am not saying that feeling womanly and sexy is not empowering. Every woman should be able to feel good about their bodies and they are also entitled to express that as they wish. That being said, woman have been posing nude for years. Marylin Monroe did, and she is recognized as one of the most confident, sexy women of all time. The difference is that Marylin’s nudity was saved for Playboy and other adult material. It was not widely accepted and blasted on national news stations or newspapers, being touted as art and an image of female empowerment. Just as these women have the right to express themselves in this manner, so should the national audience have the choice whether they choose to view it or not. And this does not mean showing the photo with little blurred out patches; we all know what is under there.

As a young adult these images make me uncomfortable, so I cannot imagine how it makes parents feel when they have to explain it to there children, as it is popping up during the nightly news, on their computer homepages, and of course on their social media (not condoning children on social media either, but that is a different problem all together).  The more uncomfortable part is trying to raise these children with morals when all of this nudity is floating around and being praised.

Lately people have been up in arms about the number of physical as well as verbal sexual assaults against women. A lot of people suggest that boys/men need to learn how to treat and respect women. Well, when we are praising nudity and the female body as “no big deal” and telling everyone that these naked women feel “empowered”, teaching boys/men to respect women becomes a bit hard, don’t you think? Is it not a wonder why more and more sexting scandals are occurring with teens? They are only looking for the same “respect” as Kim Kardashian and Madonna, no?

Reversely, how are we suppose to encourage young woman to respect themselves, stay innocent, think for themselves, and don’t let men take advantage of them? With images like those mentioned above being considered as art, girls and young woman are at a disadvantage when it comes to deciphering how they are to portray themselves.

Of course there are a lot more issues out there that are the cause for many of the problems with assault and with body image issue among girls, but those are just some of the plausible side effects of allowing these images to become part of the norm. The bigger gripe? Even as a grown adult with no children to rear,  I do not care to see a woman or man’s naked body splayed out everywhere I turn with out any form of discretion. And please don’t try and butter it up by telling me they feel “empowered” or “sexy”. Nudity is nudity. It is tasteless and inappropriate no matter what glossy magazine title or designer name you slap on it. If I want to appreciate the human form as art, I will view it on my own time at a museum.

So I have to say, nudity in the the name of female empowerment? What’s the deal with that?


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