A key principle of is that nakedness is intended to have a leveling social effect, lessening rather than heightening the body’s function as an object for display.In other words, naturism is about withdrawing from scrutiny, rather than encouraging it.While neighboring Poles and Czechs frequently travelled to Eastern Bloc beach destinations such as Yugoslavia and Bulgaria, East Germans’ freedom of movement was relatively curtailed.It’s not always easy to feel that you’ve left office or factory life behind when you’ve only traveled 50 miles or less down the road.But for you Germans, it’s completely the other way round.The more naked people around the better, because you truly lose yourselves, so to speak, when in a naked mass.” Over the past 15 years, membership in naturist associations has dwindled, and bans have thinned out the number of places where nudity is permitted.
The head of the agency that runs Berlin’s swimming pools and numerous bathing lakes has noted that the popularity of naked swimming has plummeted in recent years, and he cites friction with the city’s less naturism-friendly tourists as a possible cause. Instead, social and technological change is reshaping habits, and locations for public nudity are being regulated by law.This has pushed naturism into the shadows somewhat, and also makes it difficult for naturist associations and events to promote themselves."Facebook limits naturists in their freedom of expression,” complained the President of the International Naturist Federation in 2015 to a German-language tech magazine: “We are being marginalized.Cameraphones and social media are chipping away at naturists’ sense of their own anonymity, while tourism and Germany’s growing multiculturalism are affecting popular attitudes in complex ways.But before we look at how things are changing, we need to look at how a practice that would seem relatively taboo in contemporary North America became so widely accepted in the first place.For people obliged to holiday on the Baltic or by inland lakes, naturism thus made it easier to draw a clear separation between relaxation and working life. Beyond city streets, the territory also contained a forested, lake-filled fringe for citizens to escape to, but they couldn’t journey further out into secluded countryside without coming up against the Wall.