I stumbled into this book quite by accident, as I was looking for a substantive answer as to why Americans have so many hang ups when it comes to the topic of nudity. I have wondered – for years – why so many of our friends, some of whom have all but disavowed organized religion (let alone conservative fundamentalism), are completely spooked by the concept that we have a deep passion for family naturist recreation.
“Aren’t you worried about…. you know… stuff?!”
In his Brief History of Nakedness, Philip Carr-Gomm presents a neatly organized chronology of the ever-evolving social perceptions about nudity, blowing rather effortlessly through two millennia of religious doctrine, pagan rituals, and various tangential witch hunts for naked people, all of which finally culminate in the various trends related to (in)decent exposure in the early 21st century. It’s gets a little chewy when you’re tying…
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