The topic of my essay is censorship and how it is viewed in America. Specifically, how nudity is considered taboo in America when compared to other countries, namely European countries, but violence is not. Nudity in America is an important, researchable topic because it is a widely talked about subject that is rich in sources, could potentially answer questions about other problems in America such as its high teen pregnancy rate, and I am very passionate about issues such as these.
The first, and perhaps most important, reason that this topic is researchable is because I have an intense and passionate personal interest in the subject, A society that is well off won’t have laws that are based on personal disgust A society in good standing will have laws that are based on logic and not feelings This has always been my belief and when a country, particularly a developed country, has laws based on personal beliefs or based on personal disgust, then that‘s when I start to get passionate.
While there are no federal laws against nudity, almost all states have their own laws against nudity on the grounds of “indecent exposure“ (“Nudity and Public Decency Laws in America”) What is so indecent about a female nipple? Is that something that will scar a child for the rest of their life but violence in video games do not? Often, America has made laws based on personal beliefs and disgust such as interracial marriage, gay marriage, and the more controversial incest laws.
Countries continually make laws based on emotion and not reason and that is the reason I am passionate and personally interested in the subject of censorship of nudity in America. Aquick Google search of “Nudity in America” brings up a plethora of articles all with a common theme: Why is America so afraid of nudity? This makes my topic that much easier to tackle It will also make my paper more credible with plenty of sources to work from.
Not only are there plenty of sources, they all seem to have a strong stance and recognize this as a big problem in the United States. With strong article titles across the board such as “Why Are Americans Afraid of Being Naked?”, “European Flesh and the American Prude”, “Nudity In US. Media Is Bad, But Violence Totally OK? WTFl”, it’s quite clear that people feel very strongly about this an issue Not only are there a plenty amount of sources, but many of the sources recognize that it is a problem but aren‘t sure how to address it, That leaves the door open for my own interpretation of the solution or best approach to the problems In the article “Why Are Americans Afraid of Being Naked?”, the author takes strong stances and makes good points such as Walmart refusing to sell books with nudity but doesn‘t have a problem selling hundreds of slasher films, In addition, the author mentions countries where it is completely normal to be naked such as in the Netherlands, where you could go to a gym full of naked people (Colwell)
This shows that America could have a potential problem with body acceptance, which is another aspect I could use in my research papers In another article, the author mentions that children in such a society where nudity is seen as bad can lead to a culture that is misinformed about sex (Steves). In an article from a European perspective called “Nudity In US, Media Is Bad, But Violence Totally OK? WTF!”, the author is completely shocked and places a lot of emphasis on comparing nudity and violence in America (Wallace) The author mentions how in America, movies with violence are considered “utterly acceptable”, with goriest movies being sold in America, citing how many American movies commonly feature torture and violence as an act of revenge The author then goes to say how he notices that Americans are quick to ask on IMDB how much nudity is in and the extent of that nudity, but hardly any questions being asked about the extent of violence a movie has.
These different perspectives can make for a rich research paper and also allow me to add my own interpretation to answer questions such as “How should we fix this problem?”, amongst others. Another reason that this topic is researchable is because it could potentially branch out and touch on other topics and problems in United States, such as breastfeeding in public or United States’ high teen pregnancy rate. In “Why Are Americans Afraid of Being Naked?”, the author mentions that the teen pregnancy rate is 9 times higher in America than it is in the Netherlands, where it is quite often you see people doing daily activities naked such as gardening (Colwell). Is there a correlation between the two? What are the Dutch doing that United States isn’t? These are potential questions I could answer as a result of my topic As gathered from the articles, nudity seems to be a great taboo in the United States.
Is the same reasoning that nudity is considered taboo the same reason that breast feeding is considered taboo in the United States? If so, why? How and why is breastfeeding viewed as sexual in the United States? Another topic this can branch out and touch on is body image in America In the article “American Women’s Body Image Is Worse than Everyone Else’s, So What Are We Doing Wrong?”, it states that a recent study showed that American women have the worse body image when compared to the rest of the globe (Warner) Nudism is considered an acceptance and comfortability of the human body, nude or not, with no reason to hide any body parts (Jones). Could America’s non-acceptance of the nude body tie in with American women having the worst body image in the world and feeling uncomfortable with their bodies?
These are more potential questions that can arise from my topic proposal, giving me even more to work with and in the end adding bulk to my research paper, Nudity in America is an ongoing problem that is hotly talked about across many countries and from different perspectives It is the link to other problems in the country such as teen pregnancy, body image, breastfeeding, and knowledge about sex in general in the United States. The people who talk about the subject are also as passionate about the subject as I am, which will make for an interesting paper. All in all, censorship of nudity in America is a very researchable topic because of the questions it answers, the people who talk about it, and my personal drive and motivation for the topic.