The Lads Mag Debate
This debate has been something that I’ve been interested in since October last year. Although we don’t have the same ‘glamour model’ culture in Ireland as they do in the UK, I’m curious to hear who’s side most Irish girls would take in the battle of the feminists V the glamour models.
Members from ‘Object ‘and ‘UK Feminista’ organised a series of protests outside Tesco stores in the UK calling on them to ban lads’ mags. These feminist groups claim that lads’ mags:
‘Fuel sexist behaviours and attitudes underpinning violence against women.’
Do you agree with this?
Since the protest Zoo, Nuts and Front have agreed to tone it down and self censor their front covers as demanded by Tesco. The new censorship code will apply to the magazines’ covers only. Highly explicit front covers of lads’ mags may be a thing of the past, Tesco said. Zoo, Nuts and Front have agreed to make their covers more modest , the retailer said, meaning no more nudity, with less salacious cover lines and a more conservative feel. Nuts reportedly said they have had a great response from their readers since releasing their new style of covers.
On the other side of the debate we have the glamour girls themselves. One of the first girls to speak out on the issue was Holly Hagan from ‘Geordie Shore’. She wrote an open letter to the women from Feminista saying:
“…the women that partake in the production of lad’s magazines feel empowered as women and made to feel important, valued and confident. There is a lot that women have to gain from the sale of lad’s magazines.”
Holly argues that the women in these feminist organisations claim to fight for equality and choice for women, yet condemn the women who choose to pose for these magazines – “You preach about the equality of choice, yet this appears to be an example of your double standards. Holly feels a sense of confidence by being part of something that celebrates women.” (rest of Holly’s letter http://www.twitlonger.com/show/n_1rllstu)
Do you agree that lads mags empower women and there’s nothing wrong with women showing off their bodies if they choose to – or do you feel that the sexualisation of women in this way is wrong?
Hollie Hatton from Cardiff tweeted this image comparing NUTS magazine to Women’s Health asking ‘what’s the difference?’. Do you agree and think – ‘at the end of the day these are just women in bikinis, what’s the fuss?’ or does the fact that one magazine’s target audience is women and the other’s is men change it from being beautiful to trashy?
@JodieMarsh – ‘The Co-op has stopped selling lads mags cos women are wearing bikinis on the front…!!!!!!!’
@JodieMarsh – ‘Are they going to stop selling Men’s Health magazine too since the men are actually TOPLESS on the front? #doublestandards #SEXIST’
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At the moment the media are being criticised for ‘body shaming’ female celebrities. This involoves printing unflattering shots of unaware bikini clad celebs and zooming in on any signs of cellulite or stretch marks. In comparison, some may think lads mags feature women of all shapes and sizes in a more flattering light.
Some people may argue that there is just as much nudity in high fashion magazines as there is in lads mags. In your opinion, does the fact that a tasteful topless shot taken by a well renowned photographer for a respected fashion magazine make it more acceptable than a lads mag topless shot? Or do you think that it’s still just a naked woman one way or another? Here’s Kate Moss in Vogue Brazil and Naomi Campbell UK.
So women of Ireland I would love to know your opinions on this! Do you think lads mags are sexist, disrespectful and have no place on the top shelf of a shop OR are you of the opinion that women should be allowed to pose for these magazines if it makes them feel good and there’s nothing wrong with them?
All opinions welcome!