Aliaa Magda Elmahdy, an Egyptian activist, has sparked a global uproar after posting her naked photo on her blog Tuesday to protest against limits on the freedom of expression in her country.
The 20-year-old, who is a student at the American University of Cairo, is facing huge criticism from people around the world who don’t appreciate her nude photo and her stand against women covered from head to toe in the Middle East.
But Elmahdy is not the only one who's used nudity as a form of protest against the censoring of the female body.
With millions of people criticizing and checking her nude photo on her blog, the American art community has come out in support of Elmahdy’s willpower in defining herself.
“Walking by a naked figure in America it isn't a big deal. We don’t think much of it,” George Fendsen, who runs an art gallery in Los Angeles told The Examiner. “Her photo is one that could be seen in any nude art book as it is tastefully done.”
But Fendsen, one among many who are supporting her, believes that others are overreacting to the situation.
Sadie Charmin, who is also an artist, believes that there is nothing wrong with the photo; it is all about a country’s culture where she lives and she is questioning her culture by posing in the nude.
“It is a photo of beauty. Why people are upset has to do with the Middle Eastern traditions. It's not part of being a Muslim. Aliaa Magda Elmahdy took a big risk to defy the traditions and the response is largely a reflection of the ways of the land,” Sadie Charmin said.
Egyptian activist, Ahmed Awadallah, in support of Elmahdy, tweeted: I'm totally taken back by her bravery.
Elmahdy has kept a low profile after posting the photos and there is a possibility that she might have to leave the country for her safety.