August 19-21, 2016 I found myself running around the hills and trees of Camp Ramblewood stark naked during Field Festival 2016. I was one of very few women who had opted to go nude at this clothing optional event. What’s more is that I was the only black woman who chose to bare much of anything. Black women wore the most clothing of all women present at that festival, even as other women of color experimented with going bare chested or completely nude. I find nothing wrong with one choosing to wear clothes. I believe that we all should have the right to choose how much or how little we want to wear and to be respected. And I should also note that I did not poll the women at the festival to ask them why they chose to wear what they wore. In fact, many people took this festival as an opportunity to use clothing etc. to express themselves in ways they might not normally get to do in la vie quotidienne. However, this …
Malala Yousafzai's words ring esp. true with France's burkini uproar: thebea.st/2bDFkv9 #WomensEqualityDay https://t.co/6TUUvBKLf2— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) August 26, 2016
I don’t aspire for a world in which everyone is nude all of the time. I do, however, aspire for a world in which everyone has the right to choose how little or how much to wear without being penalized.
Priscilla Frank recently published a piece in the Huffington Post, “A Woman Photographed 500 Naked Men To Normalize The Nude Male Body.” This piece covers the Bare Men project by Abigail Ekue. Similarly, Suzannah Weiss of Papermag also wrote a piece “NSFW: See images from ‘Bare Men,’ a New Photo Book on Male Nudity” in July 2016. In the near future, you will hear an interview conducted by clothesfreelife.com founder and Editor-in-Chief, Earl D, with Ekue about her project. For today’s piece, I want to discuss why works like this matter when it comes to women’s issues in clothes free living.
For this week’s Women on Wednesdays post I share my interview with photographer Kacy Johnson on her project FEMALE. Some edits were made for the sake of brevity and clarity.
In this week’s Women on Wednesdays, I look at femininity as it relates to clothes free living. This issue surfaced loud and clear like sirens from an ambulance when I first started clothes free living. Today, I continue to notice certain trends in how femininity is promoted and expressed not only in images that are circulated by men, but also in how women express and promote femininity.
Dear Sister, Before you put on your clothes and step into your roles for the day, take a moment to just be in your own skin. Here, in the sanctuary of your natural self, in the wondrous cave of you, marinate in how amazing it is to just be you. Just you.
Because we never do. We women never talk about our bodies and our health, especially to each other. Especially women of color.
For the past few months, several of the pieces I’ve done for Women on Wednesdays looked at how women from Mexico and Peru; Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia; Cameroon; and other parts of North Africa and the Middle East have been using nudity for political protests. Recently I came across yet another piece “Undress for redress: The rise of naked protests in Africa” written by Nangayi Guyson (yes, go read it) discussing some history of nude protests conducted by women in Africa, notably Uganda and Kenya in that piece. One key excerpt: “Naked protests in Africa have historically been symbolic forms of collective protest, generally by the poorest and most marginalised women in society,” says Aili Mari Tripp, Professor of Political Science and Gender & Women’s Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “Women have used these forms of protest throughout history and in many parts of the world, but especially in Africa.” For many women around the world, the naked body is not just about being seen. There is, of course, value in some movements that focus on being seen. Such movements tend to illustrate that there …
So…I’ve stopped following nudists on Twitter. Well, not altogether, but for about a month or so now, I’ve stopped following / following back profiles that identify as nudist unless their history of tweets speaks to 1) their own fascinating experiences or 2) educational issues and perspectives. Why?