Mursi Ethiopia Why The Lip Plate?

Why do some tribes have lip plates?

In South America among some Amazonian tribes, young males traditionally have their lips pierced and begin to wear plates when they enter the men’s house and leave the world of women. Lip plates there are associated with oratory and singing.

Why are lip plates considered beautiful?

In Africa, more precisely Ethiopia and tribes of the Mursi, Chai and Tirma, lip stretching or lip – plates (dhebi a tugoin) is seen as beautiful, denoting female maturity. Researchers claim that the lip plate worn by Mursi women is best seen as an expression of social adulthood and reproductive potential.

How do Mursi people eat with lip plates?

Each young Surma girl will cut her lip and insert a wooden ‘plug’ in it. Each plug is gradually changed for a bigger one until the lip is stretched enough and a clay (or occasionally wooden) plate can be used. People often ask me if the women wear the lip plates all the time and how can they eat with them.

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How did lip plates begin?

One theory is that lip plating originated as a deliberate disfigurement designed to make women and young girls less attractive to slave traders. Some researchers claim that the size of the lip plate (the bigger the better) was a sign of social importance or wealth within the tribe.

Why do the Kayapo wear lip plates?

Through the years, larger plates are inserted into the lip causing it to stretch. The larger the clay plate, the more the woman is worth before she gets married. Amongst the Kayapo of Brazil, for example, senior men wear ‘a saucer-like disc some six centimetres across’ (Turner, 1980: 115) in the lower lip.

What does the lip plate symbolize?

The lip plate carries a number of meanings. Firstly, it’s a symbol of great beauty. Secondly, it marks a commitment to the husband because it is worn with great pride when serving him food. If the husband dies, the lip plate is removed since a woman’s external beauty is said to fade after his death.

Are lip plates dangerous?

When these plates are removed, the lip hangs down like a rope. There are no major health issues that come from stretching one’s lip out so much. There is a major side effect to wearing one though. Once the lip is stretched, it will never shrink.

Do lip discs hurt?

People might also be interested to know that although the initial 3-6 months are no doubt painful for a girl, once the lip has healed (and the Mursi have very good plant based ointments to heal these wounds), there is no pain involved (unlike Chinese foot binding and FGC, when the pain continues and can harm the

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What are lip plates made of?

Lip plates are usually made of clay or wood and range between 4 and 25 centimeters. To be placed on the lip, two or four teeth are removed before the lower lip is cut to fit the lip plate. This lip plate process is usually done by their mother when they attain puberty.

Who is the guy with the lip plate in Black Panther?

River Tribe Elder. The River Tribe is Nakia’s tribe. The Elder wears a lip plate and ear gauges. Lip plate is prosthetic that took hours to put on every day.

Is the Mursi tribe dangerous?

Women of the Mursi tribe wear a disc made of wood or clay in their lower lip as part of the body modification process to avoid people’s evil eye. It may sound strange but true. A tribe residing in South Ethiopia and Sudan border live far away from the outside world and often kill people.

Why do Africans put plates?

More than anything else, lip plates have become the signifiers of the people’s identity. The plates distinguish the tribes from any others in the eastern region of Africa. Among the Mursi, when a young woman reaches the age of 15 or 16, her lower lip is cut and held open by a wooden plug until the wound heals.

What is Mursi tribe?

The Mursi are a nomadic tribe in Ethiopia, who live in the Omo Valley. There are about 7.500 Mursi, of whom the most live in South Sudan. The Mursi population is divided into five local groups, or so-called bhurans: Baruba, Mugjo, Biogolokare, Ariholi and Gongulobibi.

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Is there a Ubangi tribe?

There is no Ubangi tribe as such. The name from a map of Africa chosen for its exotic sound is that of the Ubangi River, also spelled Oubangui, the largest right-bank tributary of the Congo River of Central Africa.

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