because they appeared in public nude ‘as a signal.’ George Fox and other leaders defended the practice, when the doer

felt it a religious duty to do that. . . . The suggestion of such a hint came apparently from Isaiah’s walking ‘naked and
barefoot three years’ (Isaiah 20:2,3).” 252 The Doukhobors, a radical Christian sect, used nudity as a social protest in
a minor Central
African tyrant, arrested a significant number of youngsters on charges of sedition and massacred some of them. According to
The Guardian (London) of 18 May, ‘Hundreds of women demonstrated nude outside the penitentiary until the survivors
were released.'” 254
In the 1920s, as element of a widening rebellion against genteel society, the size of bathing suits began to
Fall. Nude beaches, reaching their peak of popularity in the 1970s, are the greatest effect of the procedure of
social emancipation. The free body movement generally in the 1970s meet this social and historic pattern. Examples
Contain casual nudity at Woodstock; “bare-in” demonstrations; along with a record-setting demonstration by Athens,
Georgia university students on March 7, 1974, when more than 1500 went naked on their college campus. It required
tear gas to create the students clothing.255
Historic sources of the repression of nudity.
167. Repressive morality was designed by the state as well as the Church as a tool to maintain control over
otherwise free people.256
“A complex culture has an enormous investment in differentiated clothing. It’s
no accident that one of the very first issues a revolutionary regime turns its attention to is clothes. The French
Revolution decreed ancient elegance and simplicity. The Chinese homogenized clothing. The Ayatollah Khomeini in returned women to the black chador and so forth. . . . Sexual energy is required by the authorities of the planet to
maintain order. . . . It instantly becomes clear why the true obscenity of killing and violence has consistently been
of less concern to those in power than the pseudo-obscenity of sensual actions. Departure provides no range for a network of
regulations by which society can be controlled. . . . But sex is a long-term fountain of dynamic energy, which can
be exploited for social purposes by regulations concerning marriage, divorce, adultery, fornication, incest,
homosexuality, bestiality, chastity, promiscuity, decency and so forth. All individuals who wield power intuitively perceive
that in the last resort derives from the repression, and regulation, of sexuality, and that free-flowing
sexuality is the biological equivalent of anarchy. All transferrals of power, all revolutions, are invariably
accompanied by transformations of the regulations regulating sexuality.”
implications of nudity as a way of declaring one’s entire freedom have often generated powerful countermeasures
from those in authority. Nudity is punishable by death in certain cultures. The Roman Catholic church has educated in
The wearing of clothing signifies a
form of entry to prevailing mores. It’s similar to putting on a ‘citizen’s uniform’ and agreeing to play the game.” 258
168. Repressive morality has often sought to command not only nudity, but sexuality in general.
Margaret Miles discovers that “the regulation of sexuality was a leading power dilemma in the fourth-century
Christian churches. Regulation of sexual practices was a way to inject the ability of church laws and leaders into
the close and day-to-day relationships of Christians. Assessing the canons of the Council of Gangra in AD 309,
[Samuel] Laeuchli found that 46 percent of the eighty one principles were concerned with sexual relationships and
Prohibiting sex on Saturdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and also during the 40-day fast intervals before Easter,
Christmas, and Whitsuntide–all for spiritual motives.
proscription, as well as the days of female impurity, until it reached the point that, as Yale historian John Boswell
has estimated, only 44 days a year remained accessible for marital sex. Human nature being what it is, the church’s
proscriptions were enthusiastically blown off.” 260 Don Mackenzie notes that Christ and the very first church, in
contrast, highlighted a message of freedom–“from demonic powers, from tyrannical governments, from destiny. . . .
[and] a prevailing dedication to the separation of secular and ecclesiastical power. . . . [The Church] adopted
asceticism, not in obedience to its founder’s teachings but as a bid for support in the face of competition, offering
spiritual comfort to individuals whose material world (the Roman Empire) was collapsing. Once the Church was officially