Circumcision: 3 Shocking Origins of This Common Practice

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Male circumcision is the removal of a foreskin from the penis. Although most of the world in modern day does not participate in the practice, there are some countries where it’s common, such as the United States. You may be surprised to discover some of the contributing factors involved in this becoming normalized. Here are some of those.

Number Three: It Was Once Considered a Symbol of Status

Many people believe that circumcising a baby boy is more hygenic than leaving the foreskin intact, but this was not always the main concern. There was a time when receiving this procedure may have been considered a status symbol. An increase in hospital births and a perception of circumcision as promoting cleanliness certainly contributed to the rise of the procedure in the United States. But the procedure may have been a status symbol as well.

In a time when hospital births were just starting to become commonplace, the rich were a lot more likely to have a doctor-aided birth. For this reason, circumcision became a distinguishing characteristic of class status. It became known as the choice that “good parents” made.

Number Two: The Ancient Egyptian Rite of Passage

Unlike the modern practice of many medical professionals in the U.S., circumcisions in Ancient Egypt were not done to baby boys. Instead, the practice was considered a transition from childhood to manhood. Visitors to Egypt found this custom quite odd, and reported that the Egyptians partook in it due to a concern for cleanliness.

Number One: The Anti-Masturbation Act of Circumcision

When circumcision was first introduced in America, people commonly were of the opinion that masturbation was extremely harmful, and could cause blindness, mental issues, alcoholism,and many other problems. Not only this, but it was considered sinful, and many children (both boys and girls) have been circumcised as a direct punishment after being caught masturbating.

Since removing the foreskin, the only part of the penis that moves, would eradicate sensitivity of the penis and also inhibit movement, it was encouraged as a cure for this supposedly dangerous activity. The medical “reasons” for this custom came after this. We hope you found our article interesting and that you learned a few things from it. Thanks for reading!

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