Deleted:Olympia Nelson

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Template:Use Australian English Olympia Nelson (born 1997) is the Australian daughter of fine arts photographer Polixeni Papapetrou and art critic Robert Nelson who writes for the Australian newspaper The Age. She is currently completing a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in English & Theatre Studies and Art History. She has attracted media attention twice: once for her nude modeling for fine art photography as a six years old child on the cover of the fine arts journal Art Monthly Australia in a fine arts photograph taken by her mother[1][2][3][4] which was criticized by the then Prime Minister of Australia[5] and once for the publication of her article criticizing teenage girls who seek social networking popularity by posting sexualized selfies.[6]

Nelson as a six-year-old fine arts nude model and response by the Australian state

Nelson was six years old when she was photographed nude by her mother for fine art photography purposes. After some years the photo recreating Lewis Carroll's photograph of a nude Beatrice Hatch was published on the cover of the fine arts journal Art Monthly Australia, as a form of protest against the police confiscation of fine arts photographs by fine art photographer Bill Henson, depicting nude children who had modeled in his studio with their mothers' consent.

The photograph of Nelson nude caused responses by the Australian state, with the then Federal Opposition Leader Brendan Nelson calling for a police investigation because the arts journal's cover photograph could be used by paedophiles and the then Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd stating that he "cannot stand the image", while the then Federal Family Minister Jenny Macklin said that "children were being sexualized in ways that robs them of a childhood" and the then Federal Arts Minister Peter Garrett criticized the journal's cover saying it was "needlessly provocative" and announced that the Australian Government would call the Australian Council to set up a set of rules over the use of children in works of art and publications that receive government funding.[7]

Eleven year old Nelson and her father, Robert, while speaking to journalists outside their home defended the journal's decision to put nude Nelson on its cover, with Nelson saying that the photo "is one of my favourites, if not my favourite photo, my mum has ever taken of me and she has taken so many photos of me. I think that the picture my mum took of me had nothing to do with being abused and I think nudity can be a part of art. I'm really, really offended by what Kevin Rudd had to say about this picture."[7]

In response to Nelson's defense of the photo, the then Australian Federal Opposition Leader Brendan Nelson stated, "The use and sexualization of children in this way is indefensible, whether in the name of art, parental consent or political protest and that the child concerned defends the photographs in my view merely compounds what has happened."[7]

Nelson as an essayist and television interviewee

Nelson, with the support of her parents, published an essay she wrote when she was sixteen years old, analysing discourse around selfies and how at times, they can encourage pernicious standards about how girls should look.[8] The essay was re-published many times by several media outlets, adding to its popularity.

On September 23, 2013, two and a half months after the publication of her op-ed, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation broadcast an episode of Australian Story entitled, Turning The Gaze, profiling Nelson.[9][10] Australian Story quoted Jamila Rizvi, senior editor of a site devoted to women's health, who was impressed by Nelson's maturity and insight, and said: "Oh my god, how is this kid only 16'."

Nelson was later an interviewee on television in 2013 to discuss her essay and her concerns over teenage girls who use sexualized selfie photographs as a means to become popular.[11]

Three months after the publication of her first op-ed, the Sydney Morning Herald published a second, they entitled "Memo HR staff: a social profile is not a CV".[12] Nelson described a visiting speaker warning all the students in her high school that they should expect that al their social media activity would be routinely vetted by potential employers, and other individuals in a position to make decision that would affect their lives. Nelson argued that these sweeps should not be accepted as routine. She argued that the most ethical practice would be to base University acceptance decisions, first hire decision, and similar decisions, solely on the information the applicant provided, or had explicitly authorized to be used.

Nelson has also published an article and corresponding video on the burden of exams, detailing the positive aspects and negative perceptions of student exams.[13]

See also

  • Bill Henson, an unrelated fine art photographer who has also been the focus of media controversy. The Australian Art Monthly magazine once published a photograph of a young Olympia nude in response to media criticism of a display of the art of Henson.
  • The female name Olympia is of Greek origin and is also the name of an ancient city.
  • Moral panic
  • Nudity

















  1. Kathy Evans. "Masking controversy after photo furore". Archived from the original on 2017-10-05. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  2. "Olympia". Archived from the original on 2016-04-22. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  3. Polixeni Papapetrou. "An analysis of the Art Monthly Australia controversy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-03. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  4. "Olympia Nelson defends photo of her on Art Monthly cover". Archived from the original on 2016-09-18. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  5. "I'm offended by Rudd, says girl in latest nudity storm - National". 2008-07-08. Archived from the original on 2017-09-21. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  6. "Australian teenager Olympia Nelson says selfies are hurting teenage girls". Bustle magazine. Bustle. Archived from the original on 2016-6-09-19. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Lorna Edwards (2008-07-08). "The naked truth is hard to come by". The Age. Archived from the original on 2017-03-23. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  8. Olympia Nelson (2013-07-11). "Dark undercurrents of teenage girls' selfies: Pouty self portraits have turned boy-girl relations into a cut-throat sexual rat race". Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from [ the original] on 2013-07-14. Retrieved 2017-10-04. 
  9. "Teen Olympia Nelson takes stand against sexualised selfie photos". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 2013-09-23. Archived from the original on 2016-10-31. Retrieved 2017-10-05. "Olympia's story airs tonight on Australian Story on ABC1 at 8:00pm." 
  10. "Australian Story: Turning the gaze". Put locker. Retrieved 2017-10-07. 
  11. "Olympia Nelson on 'The Drum' 11/7/13". YouTube. 2013-07-13. Archived from the original on 2016-07-02. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  12. Olympia Nelson (2013-10-02). "Memo HR staff: a social profile is not a CV". Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 2017-10-09. "It's creepy to think that you're being stalked. But how much creepier is it that a group of people sit around a long table analysing information on your Facebook profile in order to decide whether you're worthy of a job in their organisation?" 
  13. Nelson, Olympia (13 May 2014). "Are Exams Ruining Your Life, Too?: The upside of exams". We Magazines. Archived from the original on 2014-07-01. Retrieved 2015-04-26. 
  14. Jonathan McKee (2015). More Than Just the Talk: Becoming Your Kids' Go-To Person About Sex. Baker Books. ISBN 9781441265111. Archived from the original on 2019-05-14. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Even teenagers who aren't frequenting porn are navigating an online world with those who are. The effects of porn are seeping into the communication young people are engaging in on social media sites. Sixteen year old Olympia Nelson speaks about this sexualized world in her frank article, "Dark Undercurrents of Teenage Girl's Selfies."" 
  15. Dan Hitchens (2013-12-12). "The selfie comes of age". Mercator net. Archived from the original on 2015-10-03. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Compared with 2013’s teenagers, I might as well have been born during the Tudor period, as I discovered from an article by the year-11 schoolgirl Olympia Nelson." 
  16. Kahla Preston (2013-09-11). "How worried should parents be about teen selfies?". Mama Mia magazine. Archived from the original on 2019-05-14. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "In July a Year 11 student, Olympia Nelson, also tackled the topic in an op-ed for Fairfax. Nelson describes the “sexual rat race” flourishing on online social networks in the form of pouting mirror shots and “sexually suggestively posed” photos of teenagers - typically girls." 
  17. "Me, My Selfie And I: A Psychoanalysis of the ‘Selfie’". Your Friends House. 2013-09-30. Archived from the original on 2019-05-14. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Recently, ‘selfies’ have been the subject of media hype, including an episode of Australian Story aired on September 23rd, which detailed teenage schoolgirl Olympia Nelson’s opinion piece Dark undercurrents of teenage girl’s selfies published in The Age in July." 
  18. "Teens taking selfies could signal underlying issues, says teen". Fox News. 2013-07-12. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Olympia Nelson, 11, who wrote the article, said selfies are an easy way to get "likes" on Facebook. She adds that many girls measure their self-worth by how much attention they can get on social media." 
  19. Kim Wilkinson (2014-01-03). "Can Australia distinguish between art and pornography?". Free Speech debate. Archived from the original on 2019-05-04. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Olympia is the antithesis of how the media discourse portrays children in the Henson debate. She is a teenager, yet highly articulate and able to navigate issues of sexuality. She is not an innocent who has no voice on the subject. She has clear agency." 
  20. Lucy Thomas (2014-07-16). "The Self Behind the Selfie". SheRa magazine. Archived from the original on 2019-05-14. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "In recent times, there has been an explosion of commentators examining where social media pressures fit within the current climate of Western culture. My personal favorite is Australian schoolgirl Olympia Nelson’s brilliant insight piece published in The Age, which pierces right to the core of selfie culture and the two-faced dealing of likes and compliments she has seen among her peers." 
  21. Mark Schaefer (2013-12-02). "The psychology of selfies". Business Grow. Archived from the original on 2016-07-10. Retrieved 2017-10-07. 
  22. Katie J.M. Baker (2013-07-11). "Selfies Degrade Teenage Girls, Says Teenage Girl". Jezebel magazine. Archived from the original on 2016-06-17. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Olympia Nelson, a "year 11 schoolgirl," argues in the Sydney Modern Herald that all selfies are slutty." 
  23. Jemy Gatdula (2013-11-29). "Of selfies and dumbing down". Business Worl Online. Archived from the original on 2019-05-14. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "In the end, one can’t help but agree with Nelson’s insight of the selfy being "a neurotic impulse, not a happy one." And, we have to note, this narcissism has nothing to do with gender: guys are as apt to engage in this narcissistic, self-indulgent sort of behavior as girls." 
  24. Carrie Murphy (2013-09-03). "Australian Teenager Olympia Nelson Says Selfies Are Hurting Teenage Girls". Bustle magazine. Archived from the original on 2017-10-06. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "You need to read this teenage girl's piece about why selfies are hurting teenage girls. Olympia Nelson, writing for Australia's Essential Kids website, creates a compelling argument as to how and why the now-ubiquitous social media self portraits are harmful to teenagers' self-esteem, body image, and sexual confidence." 
  25. Jill Stark, Laura Banks (2013-12-15). "Love me Tinder: is the hook-up culture about liberation or exploitation". The Age. Archived from the original on 2019-05-14. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Melbourne high school student Olympia Nelson, 16, who has written for The Age on girls' obsession with sexualised selfies, said the panic over the advent of sexting and hook-up culture was not only overstated but does young people a disservice by discounting the role that upbringing, friendship circles and personal choice make in the way they form relationships." 
  26. "The hyper-sexualization of girls in selfies". Pennsylvania State University. Archived from the original on 2019-05-14. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Although selfies themselves are essentially just photographic self-portraits, and taking them may seem harmless, teen girls are now taking raunchy and provocative images that mirror their scantily clad pop idols. Olympia Nelson, a year 11 schoolgirl, wrote an op-ed feature for The Age in Australia called Dark undercurrents of teenage girls’ selfies. She believes that teen girls’ popularity is decided by how sexy they can appear and how much admiration they attract." 
  27. Vanessa Gorman (2013-09-22). "Social media, sexualisation and the selfie generation". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 2018-08-10. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "I've been trawling through teen selfie collections researching the Australian Story episode "Turning The Gaze." It features 16-year-old Melbourne school girl Olympia Nelson who recently penned a striking opinion piece for The Age on the 'dark undercurrents of teenage girls' selfies'." 
  28. Sarah Berry (2013-07-15). "The sexual selfie". Newcastle Herald. Archived from the original on 2019-05-14. Retrieved 2017-10-07. "Reading the incredibly eloquent op-ed of teenager Olympia Nelson last week, it struck me how much the sexual expression of teenagers has shifted in a relatively short time." 
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