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Sweden still 'vague' on topless sunbathing laws

Sweden still 'vague' on topless sunbathing laws

Published: 17 Aug 2012 14:49 GMT+02:00
Updated: 17 Aug 2012 14:49 GMT+02:00

As France and Spain’s laws against topless sunbathing continue to sting eager sun-seekers, Swedish laws reflect a more vague approach to the beachstyle choice.

Sunbathing topless in Paris can land the perpetrator a hefty 30,000 kronor ($4,466) fine, while topless tanners in Barcelona can be fined between 1,000 and 2,500.

However, Stockholm’s rules are a little more clouded, writes the Dagens Nyheter newspaper (DN), with police having to often straddle a fine line between morality and circumstance.

“The police can’t fine someone on the spot for going around topless. It’s a moral law and can therefore changes as morals change,” said Karin Rosander, a spokesperson at the Swedish Prosecution Authority (Åklagarmyndigheten), to the paper.

The showing of too much skin can be labelled by police as disorderly conduct if the circumstances make the display offensive to someone.

The Swedish based pro-nudity group Bara Kroppar (a term meaning both ‘just bodies’ and ‘bare bodies’) believes Stockholm has become a prudish city and that people in the city feel more shame about their bare bodies.

“Unfortunately it seems that we’re moving towards a more negative attitude to the human body. It’s connected to shame much more than it ever was before,” head of the organization Johan Palme said, adding that Malmö and Gothenburg are more willing to allow nudity, with many more nude beaches to choose from.

However, Palme doesn’t point to more nude beaches in the city as being the answer.

“Society puts so much emphasis on the human body, just because it’s there. I don’t think the law can change that. As it looks now I think the current laws are ok anyway,” he told the paper.

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Your comments about this article

15:52 August 17, 2012 by Programmeny
What's so wrong with topless sun-bathing? Sometimes I feel that Eastern Europe is much more advanced in this kind of social "issues" that the west. For example, the countries around the Black Sea (Ukraine, Romania and Bulgaria) have more than 50% of topless women each summer. Women of all ages from 10 to 40-50 years choose to sunbathe topless, and there's nothing wrong with that. On the contrary, the more it's done, the less sexual it becomes. It's only sexual and arousing for the guys for around 4 or 5 hours, but after that, when surrounded by seas of breasts, it looses all sex appeal and you just start seeing them as no more sexually arousing than the hands or the legs. I could even dare saying that the legs are sometimes more sexually appealing that the breasts, so, in the same respect, if France wants to ban (or has banned) topless sunbathing, why not to the same with the legs? Hell, it can impose a full-swimsuit kind of burka, that'll solve "the problem".
16:17 August 17, 2012 by Svensksmith
I think there needs to be a better picture accompanying this article.
16:24 August 17, 2012 by Abe L
#1 - There is nothing wrong with topless sun-bathing per se. In fact, I greatly encourage fit, good-looking women with reasonable sized breasts to portray to encourage in topless sun-bathing. The fact it's usually old or obese women with saggy breasts putting them up for display causing you to immediately re-experience your last meal is what makes people not want this.

In general you'd imagine that in 2012 prudishness wouldn't be an issue anymore though. At the very least there should not be a generic ban but options for those who do wish to engage in such activities, such as specific areas where it do is allowed.
18:40 August 17, 2012 by Eagle63
Interesting; here in Holland topless sunbathing is generally not forbidden nor fined, you see it everywhere; pools, beaches, backyards etc... sometimes even on the bus to the beach....
20:02 August 17, 2012 by jostein
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
20:07 August 17, 2012 by Stonebridge
Agree with svensksmith

Considering the Local's liking for inane photos graphically depicting its stories, this photo is not graphic enough.

Regarding the story:

I really find it hard to believe anyone in Sweden actually would object to seeing bare breasts on the beach. So this no doubt relates to "tanners" in streets and parks. The article, as usual, doesn't make it clear.
20:24 August 17, 2012 by dizzymoe33
If the men can go around shirtless then there should be no reason a woman can't do the same. Otherwise time to institute everyone must have a shirt/top/swim wear on at all times. After all it is only fair ;o)
20:31 August 17, 2012 by bcterry
They're only tits.

Give them designated areas to go topless, or completely nude if they like, and then those who find mother nature's bodies offensive can avoid having to look at them.
21:54 August 17, 2012 by christos81
@Eagle63 i have one Norwagian friend he told me in there country they have a saying once u give a girl one beer she opens one leg .if she takes another she opens the second one...i think my next summer will be in holland...( yummy!). am a guy but wen i see ladies like that i feel relived and my body feels real. it is interesting to see ladies in those clothes--- sooo nice to see. thats honestly for me..and sweden keep it up. but holland next holiday...
21:55 August 17, 2012 by GLO
I can speak for all men, Let Them Go Topless,,,,, Hot Girls Only Please,,,,ALL others keep it covered,,,, Freedom.......
22:07 August 17, 2012 by VicTaulic
God I love you, Local!
22:20 August 17, 2012 by Emerentia
I think that since mobile phones with cameras became more common the sunbathing topless became less common.
22:50 August 17, 2012 by halvnilsson
Why are we only talking about the top half of the body? We are we only mentioning women? You have to go the whole hog on something like nudity or else we come up with ridiculous rules like breasts are ok but genitals aren't. The left butt cheek is ok but the right is not. Western Societies could get over their self-consciousness about the body, and all the psychological problems that leads to, if nudity was simply allowed. Full stop.
03:57 August 18, 2012 by philster61
Sweden becomes more like 19th century Victorian Britain every year......
04:17 August 18, 2012 by Spuds MacKenzie
@philster61 You must not have read the article. It basically says there is nothing enforced here regarding topless sunbathing. It's Spain & France that are becoming more repressed.
06:49 August 18, 2012 by Lamdba
For goodness sake they're nipples. I see them in the mirror every morning.
10:40 August 18, 2012 by Marc the Texan
Ladies can walk down the street topless in Asheville, North Carolina and it's perfectly legal and it has been that way. Great topless expression there. Swedes often think they are far more liberal than the American south. Just wanted to give you some perspective.

I can't believe Barcelona put through these conservative rules on sunbathing and bikinis. Five years ago, topless women were fairly common on the beach.

Dear Sweden, you have imported lots of people who accept your hospitality, but do not share your values. They are already exerting lots of inertia on the native culture. Your rights run counter to their values. This is how it starts. Sweden continues to ask for it though.
11:34 August 18, 2012 by rfmann
Funny to see the local PC feminazi culture caught between its tendency to regulate everything that smacks vaguely of sex, animal urges and desires, and the PC position of total gender blindness. Nice.
14:06 August 18, 2012 by philster61
I stand corrected Spuds. France and Spain head towards 19th century Victorian Britain. Followed distantly and under procrastination by Sweden.
12:55 August 19, 2012 by cogito
Ban Speedos.
04:14 August 20, 2012 by sarababe
If you are looking to try something new, the clothes free lifestyle could be your answer to meeting new nudist friends who look just like everyone. google "naturistmingle" it is the best choice for you! It offers a friendly and confidential environment for nudists to look for friendships, relationships, and resources concerning the nudist lifestyle.
12:02 August 20, 2012 by ljonesdontplay
It just prove that the feminists is less interested in women's rights than in preventing men's fun. Of course women should be allowed to get topless just like men. Its not evin a issue for men. But the feminists is worried than men enjoy it too much. And they right. Me and my friends walk up and down the beach, we call it "titty patrol." Checking out all them women. And the ones with nasty titties, we know not to talk to them at the club later. As a African American, some girls is racist and don't go with us. But on the beach we can see all the little white girls titties. And I got a feeling they like it.
13:10 August 23, 2012 by Mxzf
Everywhere men can go topless, women should be able to go topless as well. If this is a problem, ban all toplessness in that particular area. I'm sure you don't want to see the man-boobs either then.

Anything else would be gender-discriminating as well as stupid.

The other problem is of course how we get all the girls to take off the bikini-tops even though it's legal and allowed. ;)
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