Foot Binding

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A custom practised on young girls and women for about 1,000 years in China, ending in the early 20th century, which resulted in lifelong disabilities for most of its victims
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Actress and model Isabella Rossellini compares Botox and plastic surgery to the ancient Chinese practice of foot-binding, while Jennifer Aniston claims it makes her heart break when she sees the effect it has had on the faces of friends.
Including more than 100 reports by prominent international journalists working in Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe and the Middle East, Schiffrin's book also includes Ken Saro-Wiwa's defense of the Ogoni people in the Niger Delta; Horacio Verbitsky's uncovering of the gruesome disappearance of political detainees in Argentina; Gareth Jones's coverage of the Ukraine famine of 1932-33; missionary newspapers' coverage of Chinese foot-binding in the 19th century; Dwarkanath Ganguli's expose of the British "coolie" trade in 19-century Assam in India; and many others.
He describes how parental attempts to control mating shape social structures that enable them to do so, such as foot-binding, clitoridectomy, and inheritance rights; how parents use psychological manipulation to exercise their influence; how they prefer different traits in a daughter-in-law vs.
For several decades, he lived a bachelor life on the undeveloped, wooded site, surrounded by his pets and his vast collection of Chinese literature, pottery and other acquisitions, from Edison phonograph cylinders to 1893 World Exposition memorabilia to a Chinese foot-binding collection.
The foot-binding speech in Luther made me shudder, but at least there was some sort of happy-ish ending to that one.
Though women have practiced foot-binding since the Song Dynasty (960-1279 AD), the practice was not linked to nation-building and nationalism until the late Qing Dynasty.
They would dream of ecstatically caressing those tiny soft quasi-boneless crippled extremities resulting from foot-binding starting in infancy.
The "revolutions" he looks at are the mental shifts that ended dueling among English aristocrats, Chinese foot-binding, the Atlantic slave trade, and with luck will end honor-killing in Pakistan.
It's one thing to know that foot-binding was common in old China.
Additionally, listeners learn about the customs of Chinese ancestor worship--the very real belief in ghosts (especially "hungry" ghosts) that interact with the world--the importance of dreams, foot-binding for young women, arranged marriages, and the severely restricted lives of women in China during that period.
This includes the tradition of foot-binding (outlawed in 1905, but still widely practiced at that time); small feet in women were considered highly desirable in arranged marriages.