Why I'm Not Favouriting Kim's Nude Pic

Kim Kardashian and I are very different: if I have nothing to wear, it’s usually because my washing is a dirty mountain that I have put off climbing (for several days), but I still put on trackies, however scuffed and 2-sizes-too-small they may be. If Kim has nothing to wear (I doubt it’s because she ran out of clothes), she tweets a picture of herself to over 41.5m followers. A nude picture, and she almost broke the internet a second time.

A picture like this shouldn’t have an impact. We moan about poverty and lack of education in the world, we ‘break a sweat’ when we think about how many children don’t have flushing toilets. By golly, we’re such angels! Theoretically, a naked girl posing in her bedroom is a trivial matter that we haughtily deem to have no effect on us. But it does. The original tweet has now had almost a quarter of a million favourites, and is headlining every newsfeed and online newspaper.

Kim wrote a longer letter explaining her graphic post in which she said “I am empowered by my body. I am empowered by my sexuality. I am empowered by feeling comfortable in my skin.” Several other celebrities chipped in, saying that body-shaming has to stop.

A visual picture of a naked body is an interesting perception of empowerment.

Pornography is defined as “sexually explicit material that is designed to arouse the senses.” Since social media began, revealing selfies have become a common allotment of our endless scrolling. It’s true, you’ll get more likes if you shoot that self portrait from a particular angle (you know what I mean). ‘Porn’ images litter the internet  - an early UK study from 2004 suggested that 57% of 9-19 year olds had encountered pornographic material online (defined as “nude people, rude and sexy pictures”) (Livingstone & Bober 2004). Another fleshy description, from an EU Kids Online Survey in 2010, defined ‘porn’ as, well, naked people.

We never teach our kids about porn. We don’t enthusiastically send out informational newsletters, with links to ‘material you might find useful.’ In 2001, a study by the Kaiser Family Foundation discovered among all online youth ages 15-17, 70% say they have accidentally stumbled across pornography online. After seeing an explicit photo, this sparks a desire for more that can't be unseen or unheard.

While it appears to be only one woman ‘expressing’ herself, if we support her, then we say that it’s ok for everybody else to do the same. Some of us are uniting as an internet congregation, cheering on nudity (a peculiar celebration). It’s difficult, because the same online population wishes for equality and for women to be treated with respect (a value Kardashian quoted for herself). We want to fight for this respect, because it is important that women are seen not as sexual playthings, but as brilliant minds and beautiful souls. 

The implications of nude pictures are serious, they include encouraging the sexualisation of women, the kind that leads to less respect, the kind that leads to treating young ladies as objects. Another implication is stirring up the desire to watch porn, which has been linked with abuse and rape. It has also been attributed to be one of the causes of sex trafficking, a serious issue that has taken millions of people captive.

There are some things in life that I would like to do. I would like to raid the nutella jar with a dessert spoon. But, sadly, I know that this would result in others being angry, hurt, and tempted (to buy more nutella, unhealthy stuff). So I don't raid the nutella jar. We have to take responsibility for our actions, we have to understand the effect it has on others.
Is it really ok? I want Kim to lead a happy life, but is this what we want to teach the younger generation? Explicit material is acceptable? And even celebrated?

If you try and tell me that nude photos are a form of social empowerment and a positive contribution to society, I might just say this: everyone is on a journey, but encouraging porn and the dangerous reduction of women to sexual playthings is not one I wish to partake in.

madison x


  1. Very well said! I totally agree with you point on this issue. Though I find myself quite contradicting when I say that I also support the 'free the nipple campaign' (which is a totally different thing) but seeing Kim or whoever celebrity it is to post a nude photo just because they have nothing to wear is questionable and then trying to cover it up by bringing up "body shaming" issues blah blah blah... I guess that people like Kim don't really understand what it means to be famous that everyone can see them even kids, to think that these little creatures are very curious with what the world has to offer... then they see this. It's just messed up.

    -Mia , chaotictales.blogspot.com

  2. I've just stumbled across your blog and I absolutely love it! This post has so much in that I completely agree with it - like why on earth does society suddenly lose it over a rich, naked woman who uses her online status to fulfil her petty goals, such as 'breaking the internet' when there are so many other issues going on worldwide which are much more important! If you have time, would you mind checking out my blog; mismatchmatchstick.blogspot.co.uk Thank you, Beth

  3. Such a well written post! It is so crucial not to lose sight of what true femininity is and to uphold the dignity of a human person!

  4. Thank-you!! I'm not the only one who thinks that posting nude selfies is not empowering. If women want true equality, sexualizing their bodies is not the way to go.

    Good on you!


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