05/02/2014 11:41 am ET Updated May 02, 2014

All Women Are Real, So Stop Drawing Artificial Lines


A number of us at xoJane had quite an emotional conversation earlier this week about this article at takepart profiling the work of photographer Jade Beall. She's been working on an amazing project photographing the bodies of post-partum cis women, often with their children, to showcase the ways pregnancy changes the body, and how radically different individual bodies can look after pregnancy. It's a striking counterpoint to the idea that post-baby bodies need to be whipped back into shape and hidden away until they're up to snuff again -- these are images of women with stretch marks and squishy tummies and other legacies of pregnancy, and they are beautiful.

Yet, for some of us, the framing of Beall's work was offputting, and it distracted us from the project itself.

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