Why is nudity considered shameful?

@naturistnews: @minxdragon why is female nudity more acceptable than male nudity? Why is nudity considered shameful?


I was asked these questions via twitter, and there was no way I could answer them in 140 characters or less and do them justice, in fact, I don’t think I could satisfactorily answer them in an entire blog post! I will try it in two. The first post is here

Why is nudity considered shameful?

I don’t know, i’ve never understood. I believe we are in a bit of a holdover from Victorian times when tolerance for the naked body reached an all time low. Interestingly, it’s during times like these that porn, the sex industry and erotica sells the most. I think people confuse nudity with sexuality, because they don’t distinguish between scantily clad and nude. Scantily clad is far more titillating than full nudity, because it works on the principle of people wanting what they can’t see and can’t have. Nudity is almost always seen in a sexual context. In advertising, on tv and in movies, in magazines. Most people would find it harder to name a famous nude painting than a porn star or playmate. Nowadays with the amount of porn online and the easy access to it people are more convinced than ever that the naked body is purely about sex. Just like in Victorian times we do almost everything clothed, from working to swimming to even sleeping! The only thing most people disrobe for is sex.

However there is another side to this, as the media and celebrities, fad diets, cellulite and magazine covers are constantly pushed in our faces, we are consistently reminded of how fat we are, how ugly we are, how we need to be perfect as only airbrushing can provide. Body confidence is at an all time low. We feel ashamed being nude, because there is no airbrushing in life! We are afraid people won’t accept us lumps and all. We have forgotten what beautiful imperfect people look like and how wonderful it is to be in our skins and be comfortable. You are 100% yourself when you are nude, that is a daunting but very liberating concept!

8 thoughts on “Why is nudity considered shameful?

    • I’d love to see you do a post on this topic! I don’t know that I. Was specifically thinking in art, but considering art is pretty much always at the forefront of my mind it’s not unlikely! 😉

  1. You’re right on all counts. With advertising, TV, movies, and the Internet, most people only see nudity in a sexual context. Add to that the guilt and shame piled on by ultra-conservative religious types, it’s no wonder people can’t appreciate simple, casual nudity.

    I see nudity as our natural state but we are constantly being told that everything natural is something that must be “fixed.” Our culture and society have it backwards. When we are in our natural state, there is nothing to be fixed.

    • I never thought about it like that! I think you may be onto something there, we do see the need to tamper with nature and the natural wherever possible, perhaps we do see it as something to be fixed. Hmmm food for thought!

  2. “You are 100% yourself when you are nude, that is a daunting but very liberating concept!”

    That can be your next Friday Nude Quotes Jeannie!

  3. I have run out of time to do a complete post on this subject so, for the moment, I shall just quote Dave Allen.

    “Men’s magazines often feature pictures of naked women. Women’s magazines also feature pictures of naked women. This is because the female body is a beautiful work of art, while the male body is lumpy and hairy and should not be seen by the light of day. Men are turned on at the sight of a naked woman’s body. Most naked men elicit laughter from women.”

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