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Body Modification Essay

1373 words - 6 pages

Lip stretching is a body modification that goes back 10,000 years and had been practiced all over the world, from Siberia to South America, from the Middle East to Europe, although there is no evidence that the custom traveled from one area to another. The procedure survives only in Africa and among some Amazonian tribes in South America. The practice is seen among women in the Mursi and Surma tribes of Ethiopia. The lower lip is pierced and a peg is inserted, to be replaced with a larger peg as the skin stretches. A plate or labret is inserted when the piercing is large enough. Traditionally, this is done as a young woman prepares to marry, but is now a personal decision rather than an ...view middle of the document...

See more pictures of scarification in Africa (contains nudity).

Foot binding in China lasted for about a thousand years, until the 20th century when the practice was outlawed. The reason most often given is that small feet were sexually alluring. Why would crippled, deformed feet make a woman more attractive? The underlying reason is that a woman with bound feet is a status symbol, an indicator of wealth and social standing. Only a man of considerable means could afford to have a wife, concubine, or daughters who couldn't work.

To Express Individuality
The most common response people give when asked about their body modifications is that they got them to express their individuality. The deep-seated desire to be unique and different from other people is inherent in humanity as a whole. It's one of the most common psychological reasons that drives women to wear make-up, men to bulk up, and both sexes to do things like dye, cut and color their hair, keep themselves well-groomed, exercise, eat better, dress stylishly, have plastic surgery, and more, including getting tattoos, piercings and other body mods.
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To Enhance Attractiveness & Sexuality
Have you ever heard someone say, "Look at that guy peacocking?" Peacocking means to "display oneself ostentatiously" or to strut like peacocks, which use their beautiful, fanned feathers to attract mates. Not everyone who gets body mods sets out with the conscious intention of making themselves more attractive to potential mates, but its an underlying psychological factor that motivates a lot of people who engage in body modification, whether they realize it or not. Think about some of the most sexual piercings, like tongue piercings, nipple piercings, genital piercings, and even belly button piercings; people often get these piercings either to draw attention to a sexy part of their bodies, to enhance sexual stimulation or both. Tattoos and even brands and scarification designs are also sometimes sought after for physical enhancement. Maybe you want to cover up an ugly old scar or think that a tattoo that curls around your breasts and down your side will draw attention to the curves of your body, and maybe not. Again, not everyone who gets modified goes into it thinking they want to look hotter or get mods to enhance sexual experiences. If you do a little soul searching, though, you may realize you mostly enjoy mods you think make you look better or that will turn up the heat in the bedroom, and more power to you if that's a driving factor for modifying yourself. There's nothing wrong with enhancing your appearance and playing up your sexuality as long as you don't go to extremes simply because you're dissatisfied with your appearance. - See more at:...

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