All of the practices reflect one major theme throughout all cultures: that a woman’s worth lies in the way she looks. Whether it be her genital or her feet, if women do not participate in these acts to change their physical form they will not be married off. This stress of physical appearance is not a demanding on men as it is on women I believe. I do not doubt that men have just as many body issues as women do, but a man can still be deemed “worthy” if they are intelligent or very successful. I see this played out all the time in Hollywood movies a man of average attractiveness gets a super model half his age to fall in love with him and live happily ever after. Even stories like Beauty and the Beast where the man has no real positive qualities and still “gets the girl,” I cannot think of a single movie or story where the roles are reversed. Though how we expect woman to change their appearance for men is different throughout cultures, I believe this practice can be found in almost any culture. One thing that really struck me in The Perfect Vagina film by Heather Leach, was the when she mentioned that many times women say and believe they are doing it for themselves but really it is so that men will notice them and like them. I found this compelling because I myself have had cosmetic surgery for things that I was teased about as an adolescent and currently I think about other procedure I would like to have done. I thought that I did this for myself, to feel more confident, which I do, but if I’m being honest I think that confidence comes from thinking that men now find me attractive and that I am now worthy of their attention, which is pretty messed up. Even now as I think of things I would like to have done, I have a boyfriend whom I live with and who loves me just the way I am, yet I feel the need to “keep myself up,” keep proving my worth, almost like younger and more beautiful women are a threat, and that I have to prove that I am still worth attention. In spite of how negative these acts may be to a woman’s mental of physical health, they all function as rites of passage in a culture. Rites of passage are important to cultures they are how we assimilate people from one stage of their life to the next, without them change would be too abrupt. There is a very emotional aspect tied to these rites of passage that is important to adapt to this new stage of one’s life. Could you imagine just being dropped off at a college immediately after finishing your high school work? Going from living at home with your parents to living with a complete stranger without all of the ceremonies, and applying to different colleges, and getting the letter saying you got in, saying good bye to all your friends, going to orientation and meeting new people. This change would be extremely hard. Now to imagine if all of this process was out lawed, it would be upsetting to say the least. For these women in other cultures the practices of genital cutting and foot binding are their passage into adulthood, womanhood, and motherhood, many men will not marry the women who have not done these practices. This may seem harsh and obviously wrong, but think about what it would be like to be told you could never be a wife or mother if you did not go through with a procedure. I know I would probably do it, even if it was outlawed I would probably try to find a way to sill have it done because I want more than anything to be a mother one day. I image these women feel the same way I do. They would do anything to be accepted in their culture and community, they would go through these rites of passage no matter how gruesome they may seem in order to have their chance to be a wife and a mother. I do not think it is anyone’s right to judge them for that.