A commentary and resource on Law and Sexuality by Professor Chris Ashford and guests
The Sunday Times carries a fascinating story about what it calls ‘France’s nudist mullahs at war with swingers’. The story relates to the Cap d’Agde which is marketed as one of Europe’s best known naturist tourist resorts. Interestingly, mounting tensions, apparently resulting in arson have been breaking out between swingers and naturists. In contrast to the nudist tourist site linked above, other sites such as this states: ‘No swinger should die without experiencing Cap D’Agde. Tens of thousands of sexual adventurers migrate there from all over Europe every summer for wonderful weeks of sunbathing and sex. There is nowhere like it in the world, by day a naked city focused on a fantastic beach, by night a constellation of swinging clubs thronged by cosmopolitan libertines. ‘
These sites are attracting increasing numbers of swingers to the region. Whilst swingers and naturists may be ‘lumped together’ by the media, they remain very distinct groups. This particular swinging site only allows people who are thin and under 40 to it’s parties so not that libertine really.
It seems to me that such a commercialisation of swinging creates additional tensions in a group, already misunderstood and often sneered at by so-called ‘mainstream’ society. If the young, thin, sexy and affluent swingers are siphoned off, the swinging group becomes more atomised and the tensions between naturists (and the values espoused by naturists in contrast to the elitist commercialisation of swinging venues) are exacerbated. It is also interesting to note that whilst the Sunday Times does not refer to these commercial swinging venues, Fever, the site linked above, does refer to the Times, quoting them at the top of their page as saying ‘Fever is high class and high style’.
According to the ST, the fires in Cap d’Agde have been attributed to “mullahs of chaste nudity” but the real source remains unknown. This is an important story but such is our view of swingers and naturists that it is not receiving the coverage in the ‘mainstream‘ media it surely deserves.