Last month, Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman delivered heart-breaking testimony about the sexual abuse she and her sister athletes suffered from Team USA gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar. The testimony by her and others led to Nassar being sentenced to 175 years in prison for abusing more than 160 women and girls.

This month, the 23-year-old gold-medal winner appears stripped down as part of a #MeToo-inspired photo shoot for the annual Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. For the magazine’s new “In Her Own Words” project, Raisman poses nude with what are called “empowering” phrases written on her body: “trust yourself,” “live for you,” and “abuse is never okay.”

The black-and-white photo shoot, by Taylor Ballantyne, marks the “evolution” of the iconic Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue amid an ongoing push for women’s equality, SI Swim Editor M.J. Day said in a statement to People and other publications.

Swimsuit 2018: Aly Raisman (Taylor Ballantyne/Sports Illustrated)

This year’s issue has been designed to deliver “an empowering” message that celebrates’s women’s diverse bodies as well as gives them a platform to “find control” over how their identity is portrayed and to “speak to who they truly are and who they want to be,” Day said in the statement.

In celebrating “women’s diverse bodies,” Sports Illustrates presents photos of swimsuit issue models present and past, including the lithe 19-year-old Sailor Brinkley Cook (Christie Brinkley’s daughter), 28-year-old Robyn Lawley, and 52-year-old Paulina Porizkova.

Presumably, for the sake of showing diverse women’s bodies, the project also features Hunter McGrady, 24. She went from a Size 2 model to a Size 16, telling People in 2017 that she’s much happier with her body with more curves. She said, “I love my body now. I love everything about it … because this is my God-given body.”

Swimsuit 2018: Hunter McGrady (Taylor Ballantyne/Sports Illustrated)

McGrady joined Raisman and the other women in stripping down and turning their bodies into “canvasses,” People reported.

So, yes, there is likely to be some of the famous male gaze going on, but that gaze would also be looking at the bare skin of women covered with words in black ink. These words are supposed to represent what these women want to say about themselves.

Raisman posed for Sports Illustrated in athletic-themed swimwear last year. For this year’s issue, Raisman appears in the black-and-white “In Her Own Words” photos, as well as in bikinis for more conventional color shots on a beach …read more

Source:: East Bay – Entertainment


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Empowering? Aly Raisman poses nude for Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue

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