Instagram‘s strict Community Guidelines have long been a source of contention for women aiming to change the public perception of the female body. For instance, the comedian Chelsea Handler regularly ‘grams topless photos as part of the “Free the Nipple” campaign for a woman’s right to bare nipples everywhere that men can. And now, the poet and artist Rupi Kaur has posted a picture of herself laying on a bed in sweatpants stained with a big ol’ period stain in order to “take the taboo out of women’s time of the month,” according to Metro UK.
A photo posted by Rupi Kaur (@rupikaur_) onMar 24, 2015 at 9:02pm PDT
The photo, which also shows the period stain on the bedsheets (as often happens while we sleep), was reported and removed from Instagram. Twice, in fact. Instagram then reinstated the photo, which is now up to almost 19,000 likes. Kaur wrote:
“Thank you @instagram for providing me with the exact response my work was created to critique. You deleted a photo of a woman who is fully covered and menstruating stating that it goes against community guidelines when your guidelines outline that it is nothing but acceptable. the girl is fully clothes. the photo is mine. it is not attacking a certain group. nor is it spam. and because it does not break those guidelines i will repost it again. i will not apologize for not feeding the ego and pride of misogynist society tha twill have my body in an underwear but not be okay with a small leak. when your pages are filled with countless photos/accounts where women (so many who are underage) are objectified. and pornified. and treated less than human. thank you.”
Help keep @instagram safe from periods ðŸ’‰ â €â €â € â €â €â €â € â € Their patriarchy is leaking. Their misogyny is showing. We won’t be censored. â €â €â € â €â €â €â € â € you can view the full photo set Instagram finds abusive and unsafe at rupikaur.com
A photo posted by Rupi Kaur (@rupikaur_) onMar 25, 2015 at 5:50am PDT
Kaur thanked her followers for helping get the work reinstated below.
A photo posted by Rupi Kaur (@rupikaur_) onMar 26, 2015 at 7:54am PDT
What do you think about posting photos of period stains on Instagram? Is it really that different than, say, a photo of baby spit-up?