The Decorated Body
France Borel’s “The Decorated Body” describes how people from different cultures uses different types of decoration on human body to express their culture and their lifestyle. I liked France Borel’s work because he describes many cultures from all around the globe and defines the pros and cons of body modification like tattoos, piercing and way of dressing in each culture and it can really make a difference in any individuals life and in their culture too.
In many cultures body art is a very common ritual in daily life for example in Caduveo of Brazil men must be painted or tattooed to be a man whoever left in natural state was no difference from beasts. “The body is not a product of nature, but of the culture” said by Borel and I agree with Borel because most of the times people makes their decisions based on their societies. People make their decisions of getting tattoos or wearing clothing according to society n which they are living. Borel defines the body art and clothing style in a negative way.
In many cultures people get forced to do body decoration like in Brazil men must be painted and in Polynesia girls could not find a husband unless she had a tattoo. But in some cultures, body decoration is self-wish. Body decoration is self-expression for me at least. But in cultures mentioned in article body art seems like more than self-expression. At birth child were forced to be painted or to get body piercings which is painful at birth time.
All the ornaments mentioned is article by France Borel were awful and most people were forced to get the body modification. In some culture around globe the skulls of newborn babies were molded to get shape and they were fitted with belts and tight clothes and their lips, nose, and ears were pierced or stretched to make holeAccording to me, our body should be modified by our own wish. It should not force by social norms. I believe that it is our body one can do whatever he/she want to do with it. The body modification should not be forced by others or by society especially some painful piercings or tattoos just to be approved by any group of colleagues. It is also hard to understand the rituals and beliefs of other cultures without getting into it.
In “The Body Decoration” Borel did not figure out that why these cultures doing such body decoration. I know that it is wrong to do body modification without against anyone’s will, but I did not have idea about the beliefs of other cultures. Talking about what is good or bad without getting into that culture is not a good analysis of their beliefs and rituals.