12 Liberian Women Share What Body Image Means To Them

Photographed by Yagazie Emezi.
Like any other social issue, body image is not the same around the world — and it certainly isn't discussed in the same terms, either. When photographer Yagazie Emezi visited the beaches of Liberia and spoke with local women, it quickly became clear to her that body positivity wasn't the first thing on their minds.
Although Liberian women certainly think about their bodies, there are usually more pressing issues to talk about, Emezi tells Refinery29. She adds that the cultural emphasis is placed more on how women dress than their actual bodies (though the idea that there's an ideal body type definitely persists, too).
"You could look like a super model, but that won't matter if you are dressed shabbily by Liberian standards," Emezi says. "Family members might say their daughter is too skinny or fat. Individuals can look at themselves and want to change things. But it's just approached and talked about differently."
Emezi says that speaking with these women showed her just how differently people around the world talk about bodies. Ahead, meet the women she spoke with and see how they view body image and body talk.
Interviews have been edited for length and clarity.

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