The wandering uterus - SLUniverse Forums
Navigation » SLUniverse Forums > Off Topic Discussion > Off Topic General » The wandering uterus

Off Topic General Discussion forum for topics not directly related to SL/virtual world topics that do not fit into their own forum.

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 04-11-2017, 10:02 AM   #1 (permalink)

*SLU Supporter*
Free Xue's Avatar
I feel pretty. Oh, so pretty.
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 54,768
My Mood:
SL Join Date: May 2008
Blog Entries: 12

Awards: 2
SLU Creepy Avatar Competition 2014 Participant 
The wandering uterus

Hysteria, Witches, and The Wandering Uterus: A Brief History
In our undergraduate seminar at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, we discussed “The Yellow Wallpaper” in the context of the nearly 4,000-year history of the medical diagnosis of hysteria. [...]

The course is titled “The Wandering Uterus: Journeys through Gender, Race, and Medicine” and gets its name from one of the ancient “causes” of hysteria. The uterus was believed to wander around the body like an animal, hungry for semen. If it wandered the wrong direction and made its way to the throat there would be choking, coughing or loss of voice, if it got stuck in the the rib cage, there would be chest pain or shortness of breath, and so on. Most any symptom that belonged to a female body could be attributed to that wandering uterus. “Treatments,” including vaginal fumigations, bitter potions, balms, and pessaries made of wool, were used to bring that uterus back to its proper place. “Genital massage,” performed by a skilled physician or midwife, was often mentioned in medical writings. The triad of marriage, intercourse, and pregnancy was the ultimate treatment for the semen-hungry womb. The uterus was a troublemaker and was best sated when pregnant.

“The Yellow Wallpaper” was conceived thousands of years later, in the Victorian era, when the diagnosis of hysteria hit its heyday. Medical attention veered from the hungry uterus and was placed on a woman’s so-called weaker nervous system. Nineteenth-century physician Russell Thacher Trail approximated that three-quarters of all medical practice was devoted to the “diseases of women,” and therefore physicians must be grateful to “frail women” (read frail white women of certain means) for being an economic godsend to the medical profession.

It was believed that hysteria, also known as neurasthenia, could be set off by a plethora of bad habits including reading novels (which caused erotic fantasies), masturbation, and homosexual or bisexual tendencies resulting in any number of symptoms such as seductive behaviors, contractures, functional paralysis, irrationality, and general troublemaking of various kinds. There are pages and pages of medical writings outing hysterics as great liars who willingly deceive. The same old “treatments” were enlisted—genital massage by an approved provider, marriage and intercourse—but some new ones included ovariectomies and cauterization of the clitoris.
Ancient history? Consider how the media went into apoplexy over Hillary Clinton's bout with pneumonia last summer. They may not have blamed her uterus, but there was certainly a lot of reactions that, once you cut back the political bias, seemed to spark on gender alone.
Mass starvation of virtual bunnies due to a cease and desist order. Now THAT is Second Life!
la lucha sigue...
Free Xue is offline   Reply With Quote
2 Users Said Thanks :
Old 04-11-2017, 01:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
Crazy Cat Lady
Rose Karuna's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Fort Lauderdale
Posts: 2,123
My Mood:
This attitude still carries over into the medical industry (I call it an industry instead of a practice because in the US, that's what it is).

In any case, I can't tell you the number of times I was diagnosed with a psychological issue and/or hypochondria until I had my first grand mal seizure (once I was even accused by a [male] teacher of faking my seizures). In any case, it took them years to finally figure out I had lupus. YEARS. That would never happen with a man.

When a man walks into a doctors office the assumption is that he must be REALLY sick because why else would he be there.

When a woman walks into a doctors office the assumption is that she has over hyped the issue or is an actual hypochondriac.

I think these assumptions have killed a lot of women.
“True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running the country.”
—Kurt Vonnegut
Rose Karuna is offline   Reply With Quote
2 Users Hugged You:
3 Users Said Thanks :

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On