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10/25/2014 7:25:59 PM

ttotten
ttotten
Posts: 31
Subject: light skin preference
There is a documentary Hue: A Matter of Colour by Vic Sarin that investigates color preferences in several cultures around the world including the history, effects, and social issues of colorism. I have not seen this movie but watched the trailer at: http://www.sepiafilms.com/productions/completed/hue/hue.html
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5/4/2015 4:10:56 PM

scarjan
scarjan
Posts: 40
Subject: bound feet
I read a book called Sex in History by a British writer and historian, Reay Tannahill.The Chapter about China was very interesting because it discusses the sexual appeal of bound feet.I think that more than anything it is the desire of males to control the female .Parents want to enhance her chances of having a successful marriage where the virtues are resilience, patience, and truth be said, the ability to put up with abuse from the husband and the mother in law.Men find the small steps and the swaying gate extremely erotic.(to be continued0.
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5/4/2015 7:00:34 PM

skroop
skroop
Posts: 96
Subject: Footbinding
I am just now seeing this discussion on footbinding. This is a topic that I have covered every year in my AP World History course and I struggle to get it into the curriculum for my regular World History class since we focus more on modern history. Even with that being said though, just last year I had a Chinese student in class that told me his grandmother had her feet bound. His grandfather was a diplomat of some sort in China and he grandmother basically had little to no mobility as a result. It was a real slap back into reality for many of my students who thought this was an issue waaayyy too far back in history to affect any of us today.

Generally with the presentation I show I also discuss women's rights world wide and have a discussion comparing treatment of women in the past and also women in Egypt that have female circumcision or genital mutilation in Africa and the Middle East (just youtube that if you are unaware). I know that footbinding by comparison is for an entirely different purpose, but really how different are these topics when it comes down to women's rights?
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12/18/2015 12:57:57 PM

crhude
crhude
Posts: 33
Subject: Not only in China
The desire for lighter skin is not limited to China, but most of Asia. Taiwan, India, Korea, are [font=Times]among many Asian countries where the business of “skin whitening” includes more than [/font]protection against the sun. In Tawain, pills are provded to impede melanin production, in India [font=Times]there are whitening regimes that include transamine, a chemical found in face creams to lighten [/font][font=Times]one’s skin pigment (Xi). In India, skin pigmentation has both a colonial and caste legacy; the darker the skin, the lower caste, the lighter, the higher. This hierarchy is also found in other Asian countries as well (Hoskins. In Korea, laborers who tilled the fields whose skin darkened in the sun were seen to be the working class while individuals whose skin was light, thus not toiling under the sun, were seen as the governing class. Though this is no longer true, the social ramifications of dark skin remain. According to Zhang Xi’s 2011 article from The Economic Times, skin whitening stems back to ancient China. And this obsession with whiteness has not faded over time. In fact, Estee Lauder, L’Oreal, Clinique, Shisedo, among other cosmetic companies earn [/font][font=Times]over $1 billion euro in annual sales -- each (Xi). Sadly this infatuation has caused women, whose adherence to this social belief, to suffer disfiguration and illness caused by the noxious chemicals found in these so-called beauty products.[/font]

Sources below:


Xi, Zhang. “ Chinese consumers obsessed with white skin bring profits for cosmetics companies.” The Economic Times. 20 Nov 2011. Web. http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2011-11-20/news/30419789_1_skin-care-skin-colour-skin-whitening


Hoskins, Tansy. “Skin-whitening creams reveal the dark side of the beauty industry”. The Guardian. 10 Feb 2014. Web. <http://www.pri.org/stories/2009-03-30/skin-whitening-big-business-asia>
edited by crhude on 12/18/2015
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12/26/2015 3:30:01 PM

ladams
ladams
Posts: 30
Subject: Lesson idea
What a fascinating topic! Very interesting to see the different historical trends that have fed this concept of beauty, and to see how this plays across other cultures. I just spent a few moments finding commercials for these "skin whitening" solutions on youtube, and found many other examples from countries outside of China and Japan. Similarly, I stumbled upon a couple of sites that show you American ads featuring famous actresses and models with darker skin tones and how their image is photoshopped to make their skin lighter for ads and promotional materials. These images and videos could be great starters for conversations about cultural norms, beauty standards, and the historical precedents and oppression that help create both.
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1/2/2016 3:56:37 PM

tdarkjian
tdarkjian
Posts: 32
Subject:
This thread caught my eye because I recently saw a friend post a relevant link to social media. As mentioned by ladams in a previous post, there is a lot of information on the Internet recently that allows you to see how people are photoshopped in different countries to meet different standards for beauty. The article (http://www.lifebuzz.com/world-beauty/) shows the different ways that freelancers in 21 countries photoshopped an image of a woman. Of course, the images are heavily based on the subjective interpretations of beauty of one individual in a country, and the article might carry more weight if there were many images collected from each of the 21 countries. However, I think it is an interesting piece to look at, especially when taken with some of the articles posted above. I could definitely see these images being used in a classroom to spark a discussion between students about the different ideals of beauty in different countries. Then, topics such as foot-binding could be introduced.
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