I read an article in the news today about a (French) TV anchorwoman who posed in the nude. Her (French) husband stated that he was ’embarrased’, and “He didn’t know how he could possibly explain to his son about his mother’s photo.” (Topless on the cover of a national magazine).
Her comments: “Ever since I’ve been a mother I feel better about myself and my body, and I’m perfectly comfortable showing it.”
The French journalist who wrote the article added this:
“It depends how you look at it.”

Well, he’s right. But it surprised me. For years the French have had a laissez-faire attitude towards nudity. After all, the beaches are, for the most part, topless and even nudist, there is nothing unusual about a nude statue or paintings, or photos of nudes in public places on billboards, in fact, the French are almost as much at home with nudity as the Scandinavians, who have long held the opinion that your skin is ample covering for any occasion. My husband used to tease me about how prudish and Puritan the Americans are. There really is a completely different mind-set about nudity, accidental or otherwise. If Janet Jackson’s whole shirt had fallen off here in France during that live Telecast, no one would have thought it a crime.
But is that changing? Carla Sarkozy’s nude photo in the English newspapers went practically unmentioned here. The French press were strangley silent, and only a brief mention was ever made. Before, in the 70’s or 80’s, it would have been cause for national celebration. “Our first lady has a body to die for – and here’s the proof!” Now it’s an embarrassment.
Quelle Dommage.
The “You’ve gone a long way baby” has turned into “You’ve arrived, so stop making so much noise, get dressed, sit down, and shut up.” And we did. And now we’re going to regret it. For me, the first sign of things to come is that the French are turning into prudes.
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