Spain has launched a summer campaign to encourage women worried about how their body looks to go to the beach. Women’s Institute head Antonia Morillas said physical expectations affected not only women’s self-esteem, but denied them their rights.
The institute, which is behind the initiative, said it was an attempt to show that all bodies had validity. Women should enjoy the summer, however, wherever and with whoever they wished, said the ad: “Today we toast a summer for all, without stereotypes and aesthetic violence against our bodies.”
“Summer is ours too,” runs the slogan above an image of five diverse women of different shapes and sizes. “All bodies are beach bodies,” said Social Services Minister Ione Belarra. The campaign illustration of five women relaxing on the beach also features a topless woman after a mastectomy.
But not everyone was impressed by the campaign. Some wondered if it should be widened to include men without so-called standard bodies, while left-wing leader Cayo Lara said the campaign was the height of absurdity, trying to “create a problem where it doesn’t exist”.
Junior equality minister Ángela Rodríguez Pam posted a message on Twitter to men who believed women did not need the ministry’s permission to go to the beach: “Of course we go, but we’re assuming we’ll attract hatred for showing a body that isn’t standard.”