Bikini fur and fur bikinis
in The last taboo
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This chapter discusses the grounds for reading animal fur as body hair. This is because body hair and fur are connected with, and substituted for, each another in a variety of ways. The chapter first considers an advertisement for an anti-fur campaign launched by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) in 1999/2000. The advertisement in question features, in PETA's own words, ‘a woman in pink panties whose bikini line is in dire need of waxing, with the caption, Fur trim. Unattractive’. The outcry surrounding this particular PETA campaign advertisement peaked in the publicity around an open letter of protest written by Galen Sherwin (the then president of the New York City Chapter of the National Organization for Women) and the response by Ingrid Newkirk (president of PETA). Diagnosing the cultural enforcement of shaving, waxing and depilating as the problem can only result in an equally culturally determined unshaven body, as long as the notion of the connection to the natural body remains inviolate.

The last taboo

Women and body hair


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