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Getting naked and feminism - what is the link?

 
 
Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2017 10:37 am
I'm just curious how posting naked photos online/ protesting with your breasts out, helps feminism? I see Amber Rose is complaining because her bottomless picture was removed from Instagram, which she referred to as a 'feminist' post. Personally, as a female myself, I don't understand the correlation between exposing your body and feminism. Because most females walk around naked/ partially naked in every-day life? And people are stopping them from doing so? :- Can someone please explain to me what I am missing here?
 
centrox
 
  4  
Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2017 11:28 am
many women feel that images of female nudity are under male control, they are exposed in the media, movies, etc to make money by exciting men, and also that there is body shaming going on. They say "Our bodies are an important part of our identity, a fact that is often overlooked in a culture that is queasy about them; it is hard to imagine a moment in history when images of women’s bodies have been so plentiful, yet also the source of such extreme anxiety. If you are a woman, exploring your feelings about your naked body has seldom been more difficult. When you take your clothes off in front of a photographer, you risk deciding that you’re too thin, too fat, too pale, too brown, or just too old."

And...

"Why is exposing the world to non-sexualized female nudity important? The real question about female nudity isn’t why anyone would want to show or see women’s breasts if they’re not titillating. The real question is about who has the right to say what they’re for, where and when they can be seen and by whom. That’s about power.

1. Women too often are used to embody and reflect male power, honor and shame. It’s not good for us. Our bodies, and the bodies of people who are gender fluid and non-binary conforming, are sites of moral judgment in ways most men’s are not, especially in public and in protest. Some of us experience our bodies, in particular our nudity, as objects of repression, oppression and powerlessness. Representing them as no one’s but our own, counter to prevailing representations, is important.

2. Female public nudity is usually treated as a moral offense, a cause for concern and discussion, but it’s rarely allowed to be a source of non-sexual female power. Male nudity is an entirely different thing. When your average (straight) man is seen nude or semi-nude, it’s often considered humorous, as in frat boys streaking. Or it’s a sign of virility and athleticism. When it’s not, for example, the jarring images of the torture of Iraqi men in Abu Ghraib, men — vulnerable, humiliated and in pain — are feminized by their nakedness.

3. Female nudity is not just about sexualization, it’s about maintaining social hierarchies, like those of race and class. Non-idealized female bodies used autonomously undermine a continuous narrative about body-based sex and race differences. When our cultural production is singularly focused on hyper-gendered, racialized and sexualized representations of nudity, it is easier to maintain racist and sexist ideas — and nude female bodies outside socially approved, sexualized contexts challenge those."

tibbleinparadise
 
  2  
Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2017 08:11 pm
@centrox,
I've wondered the same thing, so thank you for your insight. I've never understood the big deal about boobs, etc. I mean, guys can walk around without their chest covered and nobody cares. A woman breastfeeds in public and the **** hits the fan. Our society is a bunch of prudes. Boobs, penises, vaginas...they're all just body parts, not a big deal.
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maxdancona
 
  0  
Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2017 08:39 pm
@centrox,
Quote:
Female public nudity is usually treated as a moral offense, a cause for concern and discussion, but it’s rarely allowed to be a source of non-sexual female power. Male nudity is an entirely different thing. When your average (straight) man is seen nude or semi-nude, it’s often considered humorous, as in frat boys streaking. Or it’s a sign of virility and athleticism. When it’s not, for example, the jarring images of the torture of Iraqi men in Abu Ghraib, men — vulnerable, humiliated and in pain — are feminized by their nakedness.


This point is clearly incorrect.

Male nudity has long been a moral offense and a cause for concern. This is shown in literature and in the Bible; Moses was seen naked and as ashamed. Abu Ghraib shows exactly that.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2017 08:44 pm
@centrox,
I understand your points about power (and I think they are valid). The problem is how you define sexuality.

Arousal, and titillation, seduction... these aren't bad things. They are part of normal human sexuality. Our society is making great progress in accepting different forms of sexuality; we have same-sex marriage and are moving toward excepting transgender rights.

But, sexuality is not a bad thing. People have the right to identify as traditionally male or female, and to enjoy the traditional forms of sexual behavior that are part of our culture. Allowing new forms of expression doesn't mean you have to do away with the traditional sexuality.

I happen to enjoy traditional sexuality.

0 Replies
 
ossobucotemp
 
  1  
Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2017 08:47 pm
@maxdancona,
Now I'm confused..
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maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2017 08:49 pm
@centrox,
One last thing.

The connection between racism and sexism in the US is troubling. We had actual slavery in the US, an institution that White Women accepted, promoted and profited from. There has never been a time in the US that White Women weren't a privileged class (compared to Black men, or Indigenous Men or Mexican men), yet to this day White women are still taking advantage of, and elbowing out, the civil rights of these other groups.


0 Replies
 
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 10:03 am
@centrox,
centrox wrote:

The real question about female nudity isn’t why anyone would want to show or see women’s breasts if they’re not titillating. The real question is about who has the right to say what they’re for,


I thought there were only two, I need to get out more.
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maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 10:11 am
@centrox,
Centrox,

There is an interesting question about who gets to decide the societal rules. The implication of your post is that women would all agree that it should be legal for women to be topless in public.

I am not at all sure that this is true. If we held an election... where only women could vote... on the public decency laws, what do you think the result would be? I bet that rules about breastfeeding in public would be solidified, but this is happening anything with the support of both men and women. I doubt that women in the electorate would change societal rules on nudity.

It isn't logical to have feminists (a small minority of women) speak for all women.


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perennialloner
 
  2  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 10:43 am
I don't know what amber rose wanted from her post, but the idea that women should be able to do things without being shamed for being dirty or promiscuous is certainly feminist. I don't think it's the only reason her post was disliked but a large part is because it's widely not seen as acceptable for women to expose themselves like that. ie a good woman wouldnt.

Obviously most people wouldnt support a male celebrity exposing himself either but nevertheless the associations his photo would provoke would be different, or at least differ in frequency among the viewing population. Whore, slut, attention seeker are descriptions more likely, I think, to be associated with women who take similar photos.

Whether or not you agree with women getting naked, the reason they do so may be to loudly show a refusal of the notion that their lives should be dictated by society and its rules, which they believe have subjugated them for too long.
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 10:48 am
@perennialloner,
Men are arrested for exposing themselves. There is almost zero social support for men who do this. I don't think your argument that male nudity is accepted by society is at all logical.

Of course, if nudity (both male and female) becomes the norm, and male nudity is de-sexualized... that would solve the problem. If male nudity is accepted in society, than it will no longer be treated as sexual assault.

Is anyone here arguing that we should normalize nudity for both men and women?
perennialloner
 
  2  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 10:56 am
@maxdancona,
When did I say male nudity is accepted by society? I said our associations with male nudity are different.

i only meant to express that the shame women feel for being nude in public spaces is largely attributed to determinations men have made about acceptable ways for women to present themselves in polite society.
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 11:03 am
@perennialloner,
perennialloner wrote:

When did I say male nudity is accepted by society? I said our associations with male nudity are different.


Maybe I misunderstood you. I agree with you that our associations with male nudity are different than our associations with female nudity. Male nudity is treated in our society as dirty and threatening. Would you agree with this?

Social associations are cultural (and to some extent individual). They aren't legal. The important question is how we as a society regulate nudity.

I think if you are trying to legalize nudity, you need to do so for both men and women. I understand the point that male nipples are treated differently under the law from female nipples. I think that there are cultural, as well as biological reasons for this.
perennialloner
 
  3  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 11:06 am
@maxdancona,
I was answering the original question. You've decided to make the thread about something different.
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 11:08 am
@perennialloner,
Quote:
i only meant to express that the shame women feel for being nude in public spaces is largely attributed to determinations men have made about acceptable ways for women to present themselves in polite society.


You edited your post, and let me answer this directly. I think there is logical error that it is only men who have made the rules in our culture. There is a mythology that culture has only belonged to men in every culture in the history of humanity until ours (which means that somehow our culture is the only enlightened culture ever). This is not even true politically any more.

More women vote than men. Many women are conservatives... they are voting, speaking out and sometimes governing based on conservative cultural values.

We have to work these out as a culture and as a democracy. Most women have rejected the idea that feminists speak for all women, or that feminist ideas represent women.
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 11:09 am
@perennialloner,
perennialloner wrote:

I was answering the original question. You've decided to make the thread about something different.


Most of my posts are a response to Centrox, who steered the thread in this direction. But I am happy to have the discussion with either of you.
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perennialloner
 
  3  
Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2017 12:33 pm
@maxdancona,
I'm not an expert on feminism, but I think the idea is not that men exclusively have made the rules, but that men have dominated the various processes by which rules have been made and changed. The United States, at least historically, is considered to be a patriarchal society.

i was just trying to demonstrate the link between "getting naked" and feminism. Im not saying feminism represents or speaks to all women.
0 Replies
 
panzade
 
  3  
Reply Mon 12 Jun, 2017 08:28 am
@centrox,
Brilliant response. I'd wager the question has been answered.
0 Replies
 
 

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