toplessness

Papers

The word “topless” usually refers to a woman who is naked above her waist or hips or, at least, whose breasts are exposed to public view, specifically including her areola and nipples. It can describe a woman who appears, poses, or performs with at least her breasts exposed, such as a “topless model” or “topless dancer”, or to an activity undertaken while not wearing a top, such as “topless sunbathing.” It may indicate a designated location where one might expect to find women not wearing tops, such as a “topless beach” or “topless bar.” It can also be used to describe a garment that is specifically designed to reveal the breasts, such as the “topless swimsuit” (also known as the monokini) designed by Rudi Gernreich in the 1960s.

The word “topless” may carry sexual or exhibitionist connotations. Because of this, advocates of women’s legal right to uncover their breasts…

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