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Fab Flash: Anorexic Woman Used in Italian Fashion Ad

A photograph of a naked anorexic woman is making waves in Italy, where it appeared Monday in newspapers and on billboards to highlight the effects of anorexia during Milan fashion week. The photo is also meant to advertise the Italian clothing brand Nolita to young women.

Shot by Italian photographer Oliviero Toscani, who is well-known for his controversial Benetton campaigns, the aim of the photo was "to use that naked body to show everyone the reality of this illness, caused in most cases by the stereotypes imposed by the world of fashion."


Isabelle Caro, the French model who appears in the photo, has been anorexic for 15 years and suffers from the skin disease psoriasis. The reason for agreeing to do the campaign? "I hid myself and covered myself up for too long. Now I want to show myself without fear even though I know my body is repugnant."

The campaign has received support from Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, and the Italian Health Minister, but Fabiola De Clercq, head of the Italian Association for the Study of Anorexia, said that it was "pointless and damaging" to show such a "crude and exaggerated image." What do you think?

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