Rural naturist spaces can be a source of community for marginalized people, but what happens when those spaces vanish?
Yes but how do we maintain Growth
Great article. Thanks for your insight.
A lot I hadn't considered! I'm a fan of urbanization. The Santa Fe Institute has shown that doubling population increases innovation by 115%, and energy consumption by 85%. Besides that, it's happening whether we want it or not. ...As is concentration of wealth and commerce, of which I'm not a fan. Sometimes I want to throw up my hands at our moment in history: so much potential for achieving existential fulfillment, and so much resistance and distraction. If you want to change something, you have to work on the next level up. I'm currently reading Gafni's and Kincaid's "A Return to Eros," and I recommend it, along with Kotler's and Wheal's books on flow.
Thank you for this article. Baxandall had it right.
You’ve given me a new appreciation for the fragility of my local naturist park here in the Heartland, as it navigates the liminal zones between community and corporation, hegemony and diversity, and tradition vs. innovation.
Thank you for this! As a gay man who has lived in liberal cities for most of my life, I still have never felt like I could find my place in spaces within my communities. While I can only imagine what it must be like to live in a close-minded conservative rural community, a pivotal moment in my sexual awakening was attending a queer clothing optional event in rural Northern California, where I found likeminded folks who welcomed me with open arms. The camp sadly lost the resources necessary to sustain itself, but I appreciate the experience it gave me that one weekend nonetheless.
I appreciate the writer's nuanced treatment of this topic. I'm a volunteer Trustee at an oldest-in-US rural nudist community 90 minutes from NYC that after 90+ years may rather vanish, than countenance inclusivity, diversity, and tolerance necessary for its survival. "Clothing-optional spaces face intolerance, opposition, even hostility from local residents ..." and can also 𝙗𝙚 𝙖 "face of intolerance, opposition, even hostility" to the communities that may rescue it from irrelevance and erasure.
This is a really good read, I've learned a lot.
"....But this nudist migration has been driven, to a large extent, by the evolving consumer-focused nudist movement itself. The narrative that contemporary nudism is represented by “nakations,” cruises, and trips to luxurious resorts is one that is consistently reinforced by nudist organizations, media, and prominent nudist trendsetters and tastemakers. Nudist publications read like travel brochures. Nudist resorts market themselves as vacation destinations, not as communities. On social media, nudism’s self-appointed cultural ambassadors – travel bloggers and influencers who fill their feeds with photo and video essays of their colorful nude adventures – enthusiastically support this branding of nudism. ...."
This annoys me, sure it is nice to have nakations where the climate and amenities suit life without clothing, but the image of wider nudism gained from reading nudist magazines etc does paint a picture that this is where nudism exists. There is a lot more money in promoting glossy cruises and beach resorts than promoting the local nudist club based in nearby woods which struggles to maintain membership and thus 'improve' its facilities. I'm a member of British Naturism but the regular email newsletters and quarterly print magazines echo travelogues in my view, there isn't much for the nudist who is struggling during this time of serious inflation.
Thank you for this article and your careful research as well as intriguing parallels. I'm also strongly drawn to the community aspect and am fortunate to be near-ish some good spaces.
I see other parallels. Parent-teacher councils are dwindling. Rundown areas are getting worse. More homelessness.
A personal belief of mine is that the world runs on volunteers. Not just figuratively, but literally. Many people have become intoxicated by the sound of their own voice and think that speaking about something is the same as volunteering. It's not.
We all need to step up. Not the families with young kids, they're busy enough. But the rest of us need to take things seriously and not just look towards events with a consumption mindset.
I'm optimistic that it's possible.