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Chinese Foot Binding

Throughout history women have had to endure horrible things to be deemed beautiful. The ancient tradition of foot binding in China, however, takes the "beauty is pain" concept to a whole new level.

The Origins of Chinese Foot Binding

In the early 10th century, emperor Li Yu of the Southern Tang dynasty in China ordered one of his slave girls to bind her feet in silk ribbons and dance on a platform littered with golden lotus flowers. From that day on, foot binding was often associated with the term golden lotus. At first, foot binding was something practiced only by those within the royal court but soon women of all social classes were eager to have dainty, "beautiful" and desirable feet.

How Were Feet Bound?

So exactly what did foot binding do to the feet? Well, young girls would have their feet bound for the first time when they were about five years old. Their mothers would take long lengths of cloth and bind the feet so that the toes would bend under and the bones in the foot would break, forcing the front and back of the foot together, giving the appearance of a high arch and tiny foot. The ultimate foot was to be between three and four inches (about 10 cm) long. Over the course of about three years, a girl's foot would be broken numerous times to get it to the perfect shape.

Foot Binding Facts

  • Since foot binding made it virtually impossible for women to get around on their own, many peasant women did not bind their feet. They had to work in the rice fields, and later the tea factories, so they had to be able to use their feet.
  • Foot binding was seen as a sign of beauty and attractiveness. Once a girl was of marriageable age, prospective mother-in-laws would come around and pick a wife for her son by the appearance of the girl's feet.
  • Bound feet were thought to be so alluring because they were always hidden. Bound feet were covered in bindings, socks and shoes and then doused in perfume and scented powder. They were then hidden under layers of leggings and skirts.
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Most Painful Beauty Treatment? Vote!

  • Chinese foot binding for sure.
  • Breast implants are the worst.
  • The rings put around some Cambodian girls' necks.
  • They all sound pretty horrible to me.

Random In The Forums

eM0-cLeW
eM0-cLeW posted in General:
somewhere in the middle of course im not too concerned with makeup and things like that so definitely not so much of a girly girl  :)
reply 38 minutes
DragonGamer
DragonGamer posted in General:
I'm a tomboy. I love gaming (not like Moviestarplantet or something like that, I mean shooting games like CSGO and CoD4). I like anime and I guess that is kinda girly? I mean.. Like look at Nakamoto Desu Ga? for example. Ohh.. Hayabusa-Senpai <3 omg what am I doing lol
reply 40 minutes
Hoellu
Hoellu posted in Say Anything:
"Pink_Cool_Girl" wrote:Leaf;w;
reply about 1 hour
Pink_Cool_Girl
Leaf
reply about 2 hours
BookWorm86
BookWorm86 posted in Debating:
"KingShawn13" wrote: "rainbowpoptart" wrote: "KingShawn13" wrote: Now ladies step away from the computer and get into the kitchen where you belong. How dare you try to perpetuate such an oppressive stereotype!?!?1?  :angry :mad :angry :mad You have no idea how bad we women have it! Being told to cook?? For a man?? Why would we want to do such a terrible thing??  Frankly, I am DISGUSTED by your CIS, PROBABLY HETEROSEXUAL, MALE IGNORANCE!1!  :angry I'm not sure if your serious or if your just messing with me.I think he's just trying to make a joke. But even so, if you ask me, it ain't funny. And yes, I agree he is perpetuating the oppressive stereotype. Although he intended it as a joke, I interpret it to be sexist nonetheless. :mad :angry I'm still reporting him!!!!
reply about 2 hours