Can Getting Naked Save the World?

A Ukrainian feminist movement called Femen draws attention to their cause by stripping from the waist up. Is that political action or simply playing into a hyper-sexual female stereotype? 

What's the Latest Development?

A nude protest held at a major tourist site in Paris is the latest statement made by the outspoken Ukrainian feminist group Femen. One of the group's leaders, Oksana Shachko, had to break travel restrictions placed on her by a Ukrainian court to attend. The court ordered Shachko not to leave the country until it was determined whether she would serve a five-year jail sentence for occupying the Indian embassy in Ukraine, protesting against sex trafficking in India. The group, which seek to unite older and younger generations of feminists, were formed in 2008 and are comrades with feminist Pussy Riot based in Moscow. 

What's the Big Idea?

Latin for femur, Femen are meant to convey a strong image of women. And while the group understands the importance of attracting media attention to their cause, the protesters walk a fine line between symbolizing liberty and becoming commodities of the hyper-sexual marketplace. When it comes to Islamic fundamentalism, for example, nudity is a strong expression against the strict, and restricting, style of dress that women are expected to obey. But when the group posed on the cover of Elle magazine, some feminists thought the group had played into the oppressor's hand. At the protest in Paris, police on the scene seemed mostly to stare and smile.

Photo credit:

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

4 reasons Martin Luther King, Jr. fought for universal basic income

In his final years, Martin Luther King, Jr. become increasingly focused on the problem of poverty in America.

(Photo by J. Wilds/Keystone/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Despite being widely known for his leadership role in the American civil rights movement, Martin Luther King, Jr. also played a central role in organizing the Poor People's Campaign of 1968.
  • The campaign was one of the first to demand a guaranteed income for all poor families in America.
  • Today, the idea of a universal basic income is increasingly popular, and King's arguments in support of the policy still make a good case some 50 years later.
Keep reading Show less

Dead – yes, dead – tardigrade found beneath Antarctica

A completely unexpected discovery beneath the ice.

(Goldstein Lab/Wkikpedia/Tigerspaws/Big Think)
Surprising Science
  • Scientists find remains of a tardigrade and crustaceans in a deep, frozen Antarctic lake.
  • The creatures' origin is unknown, and further study is ongoing.
  • Biology speaks up about Antarctica's history.
Keep reading Show less

Why I wear my life on my skin

For Damien Echols, tattoos are part of his existential armor.

  • In prison Damien Echols was known by his number SK931, not his name, and had his hair sheared off. Stripped of his identity, the only thing he had left was his skin.
  • This is why he began tattooing things that are meaningful to him — to carry a "suit of armor" made up the images of the people and objects that have significance to him, from his friends to talismans.
  • Echols believes that all places are imbued with divinity: "If you interact with New York City as if there's an intelligence behind... then it will behave towards you the same way."
Keep reading Show less