Last foot binding

Category: Travel Portraits


Photo and caption by Mattia Passarini

Foot binding is the custom of applying painfully tight binding to the feet of young girls to prevent further growth. The practice possibly originated among upper class court dancers in the early T'ang dynasty, but spread and eventually became common among all but the lowest of classes. Men thought it to be highly attractive.The foot binding process begins with a young girl (4-7 years old) every toe would be broken except for the big toe. Everyday the foot would be unwrapped and wrapped again until their foot was about 4 inches long. Now less than 10 old woman with binding feet are still alive.

Location: Yunnan-China


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