Finnish Prime Minister Sana Marin’s portrayal of Trendi sparked a debate about sexism

Finnish Prime Minister Sana Marin's portrayal of Trendi sparked a debate about sexism
A photo session attended by the Prime Minister of Finland, Sana Marin, Sparked a debate about sexism in the country.

Marin, who became the world’s youngest prime minister when she took office at 34 last year, posed in the October issue of Trendi magazine with a shirtless jacket underneath.

Marie Pallosalu Gusenmäki, director of women’s media at A-lehdet magazine – Trendi’s publisher – told CNN there was a “massive” backlash against the photo shoot and cover story in Finland. She said the magazine was heavily criticized on social media shortly after its release on October 9.

The photo shoot sparked a “massive” backlash in Finland. credit: Jonas Lundqvist / A-Lehdet Oy

“If you had to generalize it, it would be men who would say it was wrong, and women would say it was cool,” Palsalo-Gusinmäki said.

“It was a bit surprising,” she said, adding, “We’ve had this kind of picture before, obviously, in a glossy women’s fashion magazine: We’ve photographed women in jackets with nothing underneath for years and years, with famous people, and why not They never create any response like this. ”

Palsalo Gusinmäki told CNN that many critics of the cover story seemed to be upset that the prime minister appeared in a magazine about a woman’s lifestyle, and some were angry that she did so while the government grappled with the coronavirus pandemic.

“I consider this a waste of the prime minister’s time,” she said.

But the cover story – in which Marin appeared talking about her job requirements, burnout, and the difficulty of balancing work and family life – also prompted an outpouring of support on social media. In response, men and women posted their own photos in the jackets, under the hashtag #imwithsanna.

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“I think it talks about women who are tired of being tied down and being told how they behave, appear and behave, and their looks are judged – “If you are young and beautiful, it cannot be taken seriously,” said Palusalo Gusinmäki.

Marin is far from the first politician to face criticism for her looks – both in public life and in appearances in magazines. In 2016, former British Prime Minister Theresa May faced scrutiny from the popular press after she was pictured in leather pants for the Sunday Times magazine. Meanwhile, a British deputy Tracy Braben This year, she was forced to respond to online trolls after being abused on social media after showing her shoulder during a debate in the House of Commons, with some questioning whether the attorney’s uniform was “the right dress.”

CNN contacted the Sana Marine office for comment.

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