Neck Rings and Lotus Feet

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Bodily mutilation to achieve the goal of ultimate beauty for women resides within every culture in the world. An average American way of bodily mutilation to gain beauty is through plastic surgery. As for Africa, women believe having a long neck symbolizes their beauty and status within their village. In some parts of China, the women believe the smaller your feet are the more desirable you become.

Within the Mae Hong Son area of northwest Thailand, the women of the tribes are more commonly known as the, “Long-Necks.” The women in these areas are known for adorning brass rings around their necks, The rings on the neck reach from the clavicle up to beneath the chin, and these rings are held very tightly by the bone structure from clavicle to chin. This neck ring adornment is started when the girls are five or six years old and the neck grows longer as additional rings are added with each passing year. It is from this practice that this tribe has gained the name of "Long-Necks". Some women wear thirty-seven brass rings around the neck and this is considered ideal. Not only do they wear the rings around their necks they will wear them around the arms and the legs, and for this tribe the rings are the most prominent sign of female beauty and status.

“Lotus Feet” is an ancient Chinese bodily mutilation of binding the feet to make the size much smaller. to the restructure the feet by the breaking of the arch and four smaller toes on each foot. After the initial binding procedure, usually around the age of seven, the feet would remain tightly bound with long cloth strips until the feet were no longer growing. The ideal foot consisted of three features, which was the length of three inches, a cleft between the heel and the sole, which was wanted to be around two to three inched deep, and that the feet appeared to be an extension of the leg, instead of platforms for the legs. Binding of the feet symbolized a lily or lotus flower because of the similarities in looks,...
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