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Question
Posted by: Natalie D | 2009/11/04

Male nudity in film

In your professional opinion, why does the public disapprove of full-frontal male nudity/the sight of a penis? Why is it okay to see nude women constantly? Why do men feel uncomfortable wiht seeing naked men? I don' t believe that it is merely because of the received patriarchal order. I am a film-maker and I would like to challenge this taboo as I believe it leads to psychoses. If you don' t mind, could you please be as detailed as possible, as I am writing an essay about the subject. Thank you.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Well spotted, Maria - right, I don't do essays for others ! Natalie, you seem to list a number of preconceptions or assumptions, and I wonder what's your evidence for any of them ? I'm not sure who "the public" are, but there are certainly many of them who seem to enjoy seeing full frontal nudity - who goes to strip shows, or buys porn, or seeks it on the web ? There's official concerns about limiting such exposure, which varies in different countries.
I wonder where you live, because, try as I may, I don't "see nude women constantly".
DO all men feel uncomfortable on seeing other men naked ? Not from what I've seen of rugby, soccer, and other sports change-rooms.
And I wonder what you're challenging - is it your thesis that people become psychotic through not being allowed to view naked men ? That's not a theory I have come across before in the world literature on psychotic illness. Would easy access to film of nude men help prevent psychosis ?

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3
Our users say:
Posted by: Yolanda | 2009/11/09

Get hold of a book called " Ways of seeing" , by John Berger. It has one or two chapters that address this very issue and, from memory, I can tell you that Maria is not far from the truth

Reply to Yolanda
Posted by: Maria | 2009/11/04

Because despite all the talk of equality, men are still seen as dominant and women as sex objects? Because men think if they look at another man' s penis people will think they' re gay? Or they will finally find out theirs is actually small?

CS won' t write an essay for you, but nice try!

Reply to Maria
Posted by: cybershrink | 2009/11/04

Well spotted, Maria - right, I don't do essays for others ! Natalie, you seem to list a number of preconceptions or assumptions, and I wonder what's your evidence for any of them ? I'm not sure who "the public" are, but there are certainly many of them who seem to enjoy seeing full frontal nudity - who goes to strip shows, or buys porn, or seeks it on the web ? There's official concerns about limiting such exposure, which varies in different countries.
I wonder where you live, because, try as I may, I don't "see nude women constantly".
DO all men feel uncomfortable on seeing other men naked ? Not from what I've seen of rugby, soccer, and other sports change-rooms.
And I wonder what you're challenging - is it your thesis that people become psychotic through not being allowed to view naked men ? That's not a theory I have come across before in the world literature on psychotic illness. Would easy access to film of nude men help prevent psychosis ?

Reply to cybershrink

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