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Body Adornments

            Body modifications and adornments play a role in many cultures around the world. All civilizations have attempted to change their body in order to fulfill their cultures ideas of beauty, religious, rites of passage, or social obligations. The modification and adornments of the body can take many forms. It can range from body painting to tattooing to body piercing. Currently in our society among young people this seen as a trend, but a large part of our society feels this is form of mutilation. However, these trends are not new to the world. These forms of body adornments have been used for years among different societies, globally. Individuals may choose various ways to alter their appearance and this produces many answers.
             Body piercing is one of the oldest and most interesting forms of adornments, but1 the reason for piercing the body are as diverse as the culture they come from. Ear piercing is the most widely practiced piercing among cultural groups in Africa, India, North and South America. In some third world countries ear piercing mark the life stages of an individual and to signify group affiliation. In Southeastern, Alaska, the Flingit for example, ear piercing is directly related to an individuals rank in society. According to an article on body art from Terra.com, it explains that an individual could advance the social rank of his grandchildren. By hosting a community feast called a "potlatching", in which the host paid a member of his clan to pierce the rims of the children's ears. At a following feast, more holes are added to the rims of the ears. The adding number of holes marked an individual as a member of the nobility. When wearing a gold piercing it is a very practical way to keep track of a person's wealth and social rank. Stretched ear lobes are predominate among groups in Indonesia and South America, to signify maturity or the growth of a woman.
             Nose piercing is also a popular form of piercing.

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