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Letter: Education for love

Sir: Alice Woolley asks if the fact that a naked woman was pregnant makes her photograph in The Independent acceptable (letter, 3 December). The answer is yes.

As is that of a non-pregnant naked woman. Or naked man. Or child. That is, to anyone sufficiently open-minded not to automatically associate nudity with some sort of obscure moral degradation.

The typical British prudery surrounding nudity has given no protection against such social ills as our appalling figures on unmarried teenage pregnancies, six times higher than in Holland, where nudity is commonplace on many beaches and swimming pools. A similar relationship is seen between us and every country in Europe, where we also have the worst record on divorce and family breakdown. The only developed country, in fact, having a worse record than ourselves in this respect is the United States, where exposure of the body is even more restricted than here, to the extent that even performing the celebrated British "towel-tango" while changing into swimwear on a beach can get one into serious trouble. It might be possible to suspect a connection somewhere in this seeming paradox.


Kinlochewe, Highland