Mark Haskell Smith reveals the naked truth about nudism

What can we "textiles" learn from the people most comfortable in their own skin? Journalist Mark Haskell Smith stripped down to find out.
Mark Haskell Smith says nudism took some getting used to. "It's so weird that I enjoyed it." (Maarten van der Zwaard)

This interview originally aired on August 5, 2015.

Journalist and subculture explorer Mark Haskell Smith says there's a lot we "textiles" (or clothes-wearing people) can learn from nudists — especially when it comes to re-thinking shame. 

Haskell Smith joins Shad to discuss his daring nonfiction book Naked at Lunch: A Reluctant Nudist's Adventures in the Clothing-Optional World and how the people who bare all may challenge our attitudes towards sex, body acceptance and what we hide from one another.

"Don't try it at home. Try it on a mountain top," laughs Haskell Smith, who particularly enjoyed hiking in the buff. 

q: Have you, or would you, ever experiment with non-sexual social nudity? Should North American societies loosen up about baring all in public? 

WEB EXTRA | Browse a couple of images from the clothing optional world below. Warning: both photos feature the backsides of nude people. 

"This is the best way to hike ... it's an all-over stimulating, sensual experience," says Mark Haskell Smith, who says that hiking with naturists was a wonderful feeling. (Mark Haskell Smith)
Mark Haskell Smith says naturists are often misunderstood in cultures that mistrust nudity. (Mark Haskell Smith)


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