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Scarification in progress

Body modification (or body alteration) is the deliberate altering of the human anatomy or human physical appearance.[1] It is often done for aesthetics, sexual enhancement, rites of passage, religious beliefs, to display group membership or affiliation, to create body art, for shock value, and as self-expression, among other reasons.[1][2] In its broadest definition it includes plastic surgery, socially acceptable decoration (e.g., common ear piercing in many societies), and religious rites of passage (e.g., circumcision in a number of cultures), as well as the modern primitive movement.

Explicit ornaments[edit]

Surgical augmentation[edit]

In contrast to the explicit ornaments, the following procedures are primarily not meant to be exposed per se, but rather function to augment another part of the body, like the skin in a subdermal implant.

Removal or split[edit]

Female genital cutting:

Male genital cutting:

Nipple cutting:

  • Nipple removal[10]
  • Nipple splitting[11]

Nullification involves the voluntary removal of body parts. Body parts that are commonly removed by those practicing body nullification are: penis, testicles, clitoris, labia and nipples. Sometimes people who desire a nullification may be diagnosed with body integrity identity disorder or apotemnophilia.[12]

Tongue cutting:

Applying long-term force[edit]

Body modifications occurring as the end result of long term activities or practices

  • Corsetry or tightlacing - binding of the waist and shaping of the torso
  • Cranial binding - modification of the shape of infants' heads, now extremely rare
  • Breast ironing - Pressing (sometimes with a heated object) the breasts of a pubescent female to prevent their growth.
  • Foot binding - compression of the feet of girls to modify them for aesthetic reasons
  • Anal stretching[14]
  • Jelqing - penis enlargement
  • Non-surgical elongation of organs by prolonged stretching using weights or spacing devices. Some cultural traditions prescribe for or encourage members of one sex (or both) to have one organ stretched till permanent re-dimensioning has occurred, such as:
    • The 'giraffe-like' stretched necks (sometimes also other organs) of women among the Burmese Kayan tribe, the result of wearing brass coils around them. This compresses the collarbone and upper ribs but is not medically dangerous. It is a myth that removing the rings will cause the neck to 'flop'; Padaung women remove them regularly for cleaning etc.
    • Stretched lip piercings - achieved by inserting ever larger plates, such as those made of clay used by some Amazonian tribes.
    • Labia elongation

Others[edit]

Controversy[edit]

Some sources of controversy stem from the notion of attempting to artificially beautify the natural form of the body, often leading to charges of disfigurement and mutilation. Extreme forms of body modification are frequently viewed as symptomatic of body dysmorphic disorder, other mental illnesses, or as an expression of unchecked vanity.[19] Unlicensed surgery performed outside of a medical environment can often be life-threatening, and is illegal in most countries and states.

"Disfigurement" and "mutilation" (regardless of any appreciation this always applies objectively whenever a bodily function is gravely diminished or lost) are terms used by opponents of body modification to describe certain types of modifications, especially non-consensual ones. Those terms are used fairly uncontroversially to describe the victims of torture, who have endured damage to ears, eyes, feet, genitalia, hands, noses, teeth, and/or tongues, including amputation, burning, flagellation, piercing, skinning, and wheeling[citation needed]. "Genital mutilation" is also used somewhat more controversially to describe certain kinds of socially proscribed modifications to the genitals, such as male circumcision, female circumcision, castration,[citation needed] and surgeries performed to conform the genitals of individuals with intersex conditions to those of typical males or females.[20]

Individuals known for extensive body modification[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Thompson, Tim; Black, Sue (2010). Forensic Human Identification: An Introduction. CRC Press. pp. 379–398. ISBN 978-1420005714. Retrieved 2013-02-25. 
  2. ^ "What Is Body Modification?". Essortment. 16 May 1986. Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  3. ^ "Scrotal Implant". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  4. ^ "Microdermal". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  5. ^ "Dermal Anchoring". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  6. ^ "Silicone Injection". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  7. ^ "Horn Implant". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  8. ^ "Inversion". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  9. ^ "Genital Frenectomy". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  10. ^ "Nipple Removal". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  11. ^ "Nipple Splitting". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  12. ^ Jamie Gadette. "Underground". Salt Lake City Weekly. 
  13. ^ "Tongue Frenectomy". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  14. ^ "Anal Stretching". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  15. ^ "Ear Shaping". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  16. ^ "Ear Cropping". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  17. ^ "Ear Pointing". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  18. ^ "Tooth Filing". Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  19. ^ Freak: Encyclopedia II - Freak - Made freaks
  20. ^ Wilchins, Riki. "A Girl's Right to Choose: Intersex Children and Parents Challenge Narrow Standards of Gender". NOW Times. National Organization for Women. Retrieved 12 September 2012. 

External links[edit]



Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_modification — Please support Wikipedia.
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Metro

Metro
Tue, 14 Apr 2015 03:07:28 -0700

Both insisted that they were both happy, with Matthew explaining to hosts Phillip Schofield and Amanda Holden that extreme body modification is a way of expressing himself. They have participated in documentary 2,000 Tattoos, 40 Piercings & A Pickled ...

lehighvalleylive.com

lehighvalleylive.com
Sat, 25 Apr 2015 11:22:30 -0700

That's the philosophy behind the lingerie line she's developing as part of her thesis. Her research explores tattoo art and body modification and reveals "how people change their outer flesh to reflect their inner selves." For her, lingerie is ...

Birmingham Mail

Birmingham Mail
Sat, 25 Apr 2015 03:05:59 -0700

Body Art King of Ink Land has a new 'branding' technique done on his tattooed face at Birmingham Ink tattoo shop in Birmingham City centre. They also offer various body modification practices, from branding and scarification to implants as well as ...
 
Daily Herald
Fri, 24 Apr 2015 10:34:13 -0700

"I am not against body modification by any means," Orofino, who preferred to "plump her pout" with a product called CandyLipz, wrote. "I am against young women — who aren't fully developed (physically or mentally) — making uninformed decisions that ...

New York Daily News

New York Daily News
Thu, 23 Apr 2015 12:41:15 -0700

Just weeks after former boxing promoter Frank Maloney completed a sex change, the now female manager behind former world heavyweight boxing champion Lennox Lewis says she's back in the game. "I may have had a body modification," Maloney — who ...
 
Wall Street Journal
Thu, 23 Apr 2015 13:15:00 -0700

“I may have had a body modification,” Kellie Maloney said Thursday after announcing the resumption of a 30-year career as a promoter, “but I haven't had my brain altered just yet.” Under her previous name, Frank, Maloney was Lewis's promoter and ...

Western Courier (subscription)

Western Courier (subscription)
Fri, 24 Apr 2015 14:00:00 -0700

Certain people seem to forget body modification is only acceptable if done safely and with consent. Minors are not able to give consent. This “challenge” is about underage girls making a mistake that could change their appearance forever. While looks ...

TakePart

TakePart
Tue, 21 Apr 2015 17:22:11 -0700

It's worth noting that many of the teens undertaking the "Kylie Jenner Challenge" aren't doing so to emulate a traditional beauty standard but to mock or subvert it. The body modification, as evidenced in tweets, YouTube videos, and Instagram posts ...
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