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French minister's controversial pose on Playboy cover sees magazine sell out in three hours
Featured Image Credit: Liewig Christian/ABACA/Shutterstock/Playboy

French minister's controversial pose on Playboy cover sees magazine sell out in three hours

The outspoken minister for social economy Marlène Schiappa appeared in the April edition

French minister Marlène Schiappa has sparked outrage after she posed for the cover of French Playboy, in a move that saw the magazine sell out from newsstands within three hours.

Jean-Christophe Florentin, the magazine's director, claimed that more than 100,000 copies of the April issue were sold within three hours of its release this month.

To put that into context: French Playboy’s usual sales are around 30,000 copies for the entire month - so the publisher has put extra copies into circulation to meet demand.

Marlène Schiappa has boosted Playboy sales.

Alongside the controversial cover, in the her interview with the magazine, Schiappa discusses gender equality, gay rights and abortion.

While the politician was fully clothed for the shoot, the move has drawn criticism from both her political opponents and her colleagues.

French Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne commented that the move was 'was not at all appropriate, especially in the current period'.

In recent weeks France has seen a series of violent clashes between police and striking workers, angry at President Emmanuel Macron's plans to raise retirement age by two years to 64.

The 12-page spread sees Schiappa pose in various outfits and defending the right for women to do 'exactly what they want'.

The minister has faced criticism giving the cover's timing.

Green MP and fellow women's rights activist Sandrine Rousseau, while on board with the feminist message, questioned Schiappa's timing because of the unrest.

She told the BFM TV channel: "Women's bodies should be able to be exposed anywhere, I don't have a problem with that, but there's a social context."

The opposition criticised the 'smoke screen', labelling the Playboy cover as a stunt to detract from the current crises.

Schiappa clapped back on April 1 on Twitter, defending her decision to appear in the magazine, writing: "Defending the right of women to do what they want with their bodies: everywhere and all the time. In France, women are free. Whether it annoys the retrogrades and hypocrites or not."

Schiappa has previously written about and campaigned for women's rights.

It is not the first time the feminist author and women's rights activist-turned-politician has caused a stir, with the Financial Times labelling her 'agent provocateur'.

She has written previously about the challenges of motherhood, women's health and pregnancy.

Schiappa brought in legislation outlawing catcalling and street harassment while serving as equalities minister in 2018 and in 2010 authored a book which provided sex tips for overweight people, perceived by some to reinforce harmful clichés.

The editor of the French-language edition of Playboy described her as the most 'Playboy compatible' of ministers in the current cabinet, due to her strong, vocal support of women's rights.

Topics: News, Politics, World News

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