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Campaign Against “Aesthetic Violence” Used Beach Photos Without Consent by Carlos Perona Calvete

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Campaign Against “Aesthetic Violence” Used Beach Photos Without Consent

The Spanish Ministry of Equality recently produced a poster featuring overweight women at the beach, under the heading “the summer is also ours.”

Presumably, this campaign was meant to educate the public to understand that different body sizes and weights are equivalently valid and, specifically to serve as a pedagogic blow against the ‘male gaze’ and prevailing beauty standards (given that the poster seems to mostly or exclusively feature biological women). 

The question of whether discrimination against overweight women at beaches and summer resorts is, in fact, taking place, such that public money needed spending on this initiative, remains open. Leaving the issue of quantifying discriminatory practices aside, however, the government has insisted that it needed to act in order to fight “aesthetic violence.”  

In any case, the head of the Ministry of Equality, Irene Montero, is now coming under scrutiny. 

Several women featured on the poster have come forward, stating that they were not asked to participate in this campaign, and that their photographs were used in the poster without their consent

In addition, the photographs were altered in various ways, including to hide one of the woman’s prosthetic legs. 
For its part, the Ministry has claimed it did not know the women were “real persons.”

Carlos Perona Calvete is a writer for The European Conservative. He has a background in International Relations and Organizational Behavior, has worked in the field of European project management, and is currently awaiting publication of a book in which he explores the metaphysics of political representation.