Is Diversity in Nudism World A Myth or Reality?

| March 5, 2012 | 11 Comments

Is There Enough Diversity In Nudism Today?

Diversity in Nudism – Last week we posted a new video entitled “Shit Clothed People Say to Nudists,” a quick roll of the funny, genuine and ridiculous questions we hear all the time from clothed people, along with our responses. (Also, if the title reference escaped you, it’s our take on the “Shit People Say” meme parading viral video charts these last few months.)

To create this video I called upon our lovely friends and members of YNA to be my actors and actresses for a day, and many came through! We shared and munched on Superbowl snacks, laughed a lot, and everyone gave it their best for the camera.

What we didn’t notice until a few days after posting it, was that this group was so fantastically diverse! Asian, Colombian, African-American, and the list doesn’t end there. The funny thing is that it only occurred to us after reading a question on Yahoo about minorities and nudism. After watching the video, it suddenly clicked that we were the most diverse group of people I’ve ever had the pleasure of being with.

Unfortunately this diversity isn’t usually seen in the nudist world (in the US, though it’s certainly observed in other countries such as England). Clubs and resorts seem to be mainly populated by middle to upper class older white people. Just like when you imagine the stereotypical nudist.

nudist stereotype

Stereotypical Nudists

There are various factors that might explain it having to do with cultural, regional, and economic differences, etc. We try to do outreach with all of this in mind, as nudism shouldn’t be so limited. However, we live in the melting pot of New York City, so I think that makes a big, positive difference.

There we were with a cast of people of all different backgrounds, races and ethnicities. Some were younger, some older, but for one connecting factor, they are all just fun to be around. While nude, we find ourselves looking beyond not only clothing and its social innuendos, but color and race, too. What have you observed about nudism and diversity? Still a lack thereof or are we diversifying?

diverse nudist group

Diversity and Nudism

Sex Positive and Body Image Blogs by Felicity Jones For – Young Naturists And Nudists America YNA

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Category: Social Nudity Blogs, Felicity's Nudist Blog, Nudism and Naturism

About the Author ()

Author of Felicity's Blog. Co-founder of Young Naturists America. 3rd-generation nudie. Avid reader. Feminist. 70% vegan, 30% vegetarian. When I'm not busy eating, I'm writing about naturism, censorship, topfree equality, body image and other fun topics. I like feedback, so plz leave a comment when you've got something to say!
  • charles tenaglia

    Yes, prejudice is everywhere against, Race, Color, Creed, Nationality, Age, Gender, Appearance, Disability…. Yes, there is diversity in all groups, and unfortunately the Nudists get a lot of bad press. They are thought of by some as being hedonists, group sex feens, pot-heads, voyeurs, strickly homosexuals, and atheists. Though some of that is true—all groups have their diversity—it is great that Felicity is opening up the topic in a positive fashion and hopefully bringing good P.R. to the Naturist/Nudist movement.

  • Sonny

    After Mark Foley and Bill O'Reilly began their campaign of running videos showing children at nudist resorts on Fox News and demanding nudist beaches, clubs and resorts be immediately terminated, many nudists promptly jettisoned beliefs for including children in their community. It became a veritable third-rail issue for nudists. Social Nudism then abruptly went into a hard tailspin of decline. Apparently, some thought nevermind pastor Martin Niemöller's timeless warning.

    It reminds me of the famous George Carlin quip, "Do what you want with the girl, but leave me alone!"

    Even other marginalized groups soon got into the act, for example, frequent comments by those in favor of the decriminalization of marijuana would often posit, "Why can't the police just leave us alone and go after perverts and nudists?"

    Except for this organization, Social Nudism seemed more than willing simply to abandon the young to the vitriol and hype, to the divide-and-conquer.

    Yet this organization distinguishes itself by its inclusivity. I remain in awe at the very majesty of its founders and their grasp of the important need for diversity. I believe it is YNA that can reclaim this social/cultural strata, nurture it and once again, make it grow.

    • Hey (again) Sonny, (just getting around to hitting reply to your comments :) ,

      I don't remember this campaign against nudist resorts because of children, but not at all surprised. If only there weren't so many people who take Bill O'Reilly or Fox News seriously. But nudists and clubs reacted by not including kids anymore? If that's true, what a terrible response.

      We find it best to face issues head-on, and diversity is one of them! It IS important for the growth of social nudism, and thank you for supporting and believing in us! :)

  • Desnudez

    I made a reply on my Tumblr page (arizonavichi.tumblr.com), but here it is again:

    A bit self-congratulatory, but I'm glad they recognize that there is a problem.

    Despite all the talk about shedding inhibitions and societal restrictions, nudists seem just as likely to self-segregate when they are naked as they are when they are clothed. Surprise: nudists reflect the larger society.

    I've also been privy to more abject racism from nudists. One club owner casually used a racial epithet against Asians to describe my Korean car. I've had two incidents where visitors at a club I frequent shared their disturbing views of their Hispanic neighbors. They didn't know much about my heritage, I guess. These are isolated incidents (I hope) and reflect the problems of the larger society. Still, disturbing and revealing about a movement that prides itself on being open, non-judgmental and welcoming.

    • "Despite all the talk about shedding inhibitions and societal restrictions, nudists seem just as likely to self-segregate when they are naked as they are when they are clothed. " Interesting statement, though in my opinion I don't think this happens as often in a social nude setting. Perhaps I need to observe at the beach, where there are larger groups of minorities.

      If nudists really do "reflect the larger society" then racist nudists will certainly exist just as they do in the clothed world. It is indeed a disturbing thought, so backwards to the movement, but I would hope most people generally understand and respect the naturist philosophy and their fellow human beings.

  • charles tenaglia

    I'm sure if you dig down deep into many of the nudists you'll find a cornucopia of nationalities, culture, rich in the Arts of dance, painting, poetry, photography, music, sports, cooking, massage…a great Community of nudists. Wouldn't it be great if we could get everyone to share their talents!

  • Billy V

    New York is very diverse. Just take a look at Sandy Hook. You also see the same thing at Haulover.

    You see less diversity at the private landed clubs. That may be due to cultural and econimcal differences. One of the more diverse clubs I have seen is Sunny Rest in Pennsylvania. There I've seen people from all kind of ethnic groups and met people there from many different countries including Latin American countries, Poland, and even Albania. Countries that are not generally considered naturist friendly.

    • Billy, yes I definitely give a lot of credit to NY being such a diverse place! I agree with you about beaches vs. private landed clubs. There is a noticeable difference there in the people that go to each one. I think it has more to do with economic differences, since it is much cheaper and overall easier to go to the beach. Clubs/resorts are more like a luxury, reserved for the white and "privileged" class. It's great that Sunny Rest gets a wide range of people! It makes sense, they have good rates and always a lot going on.

  • Kirill

    I think nudists in New York area are very diverse. My feeling is that maybe Asians are underrepresented, but there is a good proportion of people from other minorities, especially African-Americans.

  • Bill Stebbins

    Yes, I agree diverse. So, That is the stereotypical nudists is it? Where is a photo to comparing non stereotypical or we supposed to know that? Anyway, nice page.

    • Bill, yes I wanted to show two white hippie girls as stereotypical nudists, and the last photo is meant to show a bit of diversity from YNA, or the "non-stereotypical" nudists you could say.