Asians have had a long history of nudity in their lifestyles throughout both the ancient and relatively modern ages. However, it's almost impossible for a woman to take their tops off on a beach, let alone find a nudist beach in Asia today. Granted, there are a very few countries like Thailand where there are a few nudist venues and where nudism is for the most part, tolerated, but those are too few an exception. This is of course ridiculous because not only of our history of nudity but because most of our countries have incredible nature and experience wonderful weather throughout the year, all perfect to get naked in. Why has this come about? How are we coping with it?
There are many reasons for our incredible aversion to nudity and it would take another blog to discuss those. But from living in my country alone (Sri Lanka) and having studied its history, I know that a lot of these prudish attitudes came into being after the British invasion of the 19th century. We had a monarchical system here before which, apart from its feudalistic and imperialistic facades, did have a good tolerance of nudity. Women in villages used to go fully topless without anyone caring, dancers performed topless in palaces and royal events all the time and Art often depicted full-on nudity sans censorship of any form. It was after the British enforced their Victorian moralities that things began to change. They have since moved on from this prudishness, but many of our countries are still stuck in the 19th century.
I'm not saying that the British are the only reason for our negative attitudes to nudity, but they were a main contributing factor. Today, we are forced to be nudists only in our homes, not daring to go nude even in our own backyards for fear of persecution. We practice in secret, meet in secret and have become a taboo community who will be vilified if ever caught. It really is sad but the young generation at least, seems a bit more immune from their parent's ultra-textile attitudes. One can only hope that this generation will grow-up and embrace nudism for what it really is, at least from online communities like this, and make our continent a more nude-friendly zone. But then again, it's a long way to go and so very few people to travel with..