Kiera Knightley’s Uncensored Topless Photo Begs the Question: What is Beautiful?

Even celebrities are not immune to society’s need to control beauty. The battle to be considered beautiful seems to be a never ending struggle. Actress Kiera Knightley is the most recent celebrity who spoke and acted out against the posters and photos that have been allowed to be viewed by the public. These photos may have been photo shopped by altering her body to the desired effect of today’s media.

Knightley recently posed topless for Interview Magazine “so [that] people could see what she really looked like,” as states. This was an effort to take a stand against photo shopped pictures of celebs that are viewed by the public on a daily basis. Knightley is among several female celebrities who are fed up with the ways in which their bodies are incorrectly portrayed in the media.

Via Patrick Demarchelier/Interview Magazine
Via Patrick Demarchelier/Interview Magazine

“I’ve had my body manipulated so many different times for so many different reasons, whether it’s paparazzi photographers or for film posters,” Knightley told The Times. “That [shoot] was one of the ones where I said: ‘OK, I’m fine doing the topless shot so long as you don’t make them any bigger or retouch.’ Because it does feel important to say it really doesn’t matter what shape you are.” The photo in Interview magazine depicts Knightley with her breasts uncensored.

Although, it may have not been a picture for young fans to view, it is a powerful and artful stance on the subjectivity of beauty and all the ways her body has been portrayed as something it’s not. As states, “Knightley’s figure was controversially distorted on the poster for King Arthur in 2004: Her breasts were edited to look bigger than they are in real life.” Therefore, her topless photo shoot revealed to the world what her breasts truly look like.

Via King Arthur
Via King Arthur also reports that Knightley told The Times, “I think women’s bodies are a battleground and photography is partly to blame.” Knightley explains, “Our society is so photographic now, it becomes more difficult to see all of those different varieties of shape.” After Knightley’s controversial photo, one could go as far as to beg the question: is her actual shape as beautiful or desirable as her prior photos? The answer should be obvious—of course! The only way to be truly beautiful is to love your natural self no matter what the media says at the moment.


About Stacy Narine

Originally from Paterson, NJ, I recently graduated from Seton Hall University with my B.A in English. I will be starting my M.A program in Literature at Seton Hall University in spring 2015. I love Pinterest, Photoshop, and writing fictional short stories about characters who are trying to establish a sense of individuality while in relationships. Ready to momentarily stray from fiction, I am motivated to write about topics that are important to women.

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