Opinion article gave narrow perspective on students#039; bodies

by Beacon Staff • April 23, 2008

Dear Editor,

After reading "em nude spread a ploy?" [April 17] by Lisa Johnson, the real question is why, at an art and communication school, nudity equates to pornography.

When we came up with the idea for the nude shoot, our purpose was to discuss insecurities college students have. Yes, the nude shoot was provocative, but every magazine seeks to match content to audience. The reason for featuring nude models in this shoot was more than just skin deep.

We are not "pandering to the pornographic appetites of the college demographic." We are catering to a readership dealing with insecurities on a daily basis. Our main drive behind this photo shoot was to explore these issues and prove to our readers that they are not alone in feeling insecure. We wanted to do so in a creative and meaningful way.

Photographing the models in the nude portrays their sense of vulnerability as they reveal very personal concerns about themselves to the Emerson student body-a brave endeavor that should be celebrated, and not considered a "ploy."

We disagree strongly when Johnson says that our idea "lacks originality," and "is portraying the common as unique." To be frank, these opinions would have been denounced as foolish had a formal interview been conducted with any staff member of em magazine.

Instead, these opinions were conjured by a Beacon contributing writer whose only source was an e-mail sent to models interested in the shoot.

There were no "statements" made by the editors in chief of em magazine. There is no mention of body insecurities in any of the models' quotes and therefore, comparing us to reality shows on TV and beauty campaigns dealing with body concerns is invalid, as is comparing us to boink! and the H Bomb, which are pornographic student magazines that in no way resemble em magazine's mission.

We may be a student run and produced magazine, but that shouldn't warrant criticism towards our publication, because we are covering real issues that students have.

-Faye Brennan and Andrea Drygas

Co-editors in chief

em magazine