What would late feminist Betty Friedan think of the recent Vanity Fair cover with a naked artfully nude Scarlett Johannson and Keira Knightley sprawled out before a fully clothed Tom Ford? That's the question Anthony Kaufman ponders on his blog today, and it's a darn good one. Kaufman questions why, in this day and age, we aren't seeing a Vanity Fair cover with naked male models and a female power figure?

Amen to that, Anthony.  I'll take it one step further - why not a naked Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal, "artfully nude"? Why is it always females in Hollywood who are portrayed as sexual objects for men (like the fully-clothed Tom Ford in the cover photo) to leer at? Johansson and Knightley are award-nominated actresses (Johansson for several Golden Globes, Knightley for an Oscar this year); shouldn't the focus be more on their talent on screen, and less on their nude bodies? Maybe they should have followed Rachel McAdam's lead and just said "no" to the nude cover.

Is it demeaning for Vanity Fair to put nude actresses on the cover without giving equal (un)coverage to top actors? I'm not talking about the quality or artsiness of the photo itself here, but the greater issue of inequity in the way women are viewed by Hollywood. What do you think?

[ via Indiewire ]