I am not trying to argue for mandatory toplessness, or even bralessness. What I am arguing for is a woman’s right to choose how she represents her body — and to make that choice based on personal desire and not a fear of how people will react to her or how society will judge her. No woman should be made to feel ashamed of her body.
Scout Willis has written a piece for xoJane (which I recently decided is kins of a sex positive Daily Mail, what with the extremely lengthy and overly explanatory confessional headlines) about why she was photographed walking around NYC topless late last week. Her #FreeTheNipple campaign is in response to Instagram’s ban on the areolae, and while I was expecting to kind of roll my eyes at the whole thing being a little silly, her piece is actually rather well-researched. For example, did you know…
In the 1930s, men’s nipples were just as provocative, shameful, and taboo as women’s are now, and men were protesting in much the same way. In 1930, four men went topless to Coney Island and were arrested. In 1935, a flash mob of topless men descended upon Atlantic City, 42 of whom were arrested. Men fought and they were heard, changing not only laws but social consciousness. And by 1936, men’s bare chests were accepted as the norm.
…because I did not. Fascinating! I still wish Scout was using her nepotism-driven celebrity to focus on more pressing women’s issues — and really, Instagram is a free app that’s allowed to have its own rules and terms of service — but good for her for being passionate about … something. [xoJane]