Saturday, July 24, 2010

Breast Ironing of Young Girls in Cameroon

*Warning: Graphic Content
From HuffPost:
Affecting one out of every four girls, the brutal practice of "breast ironing" is on the rise in the African country of Cameroon. The procedure -- which involves the flattening of a young girl's growing breasts with hot stones, coconut shells and other objects -- is considered a way to curb the country's staggering number of teenage pregnancies, particularly high in rural areas, as well as limit the risk of sexual assault.

According to a new report by CurrentTV, Cameroonian mothers believe breast ironing will protect their daughters from becoming pregnant and being assaulted in that it will postpone their development and men will not be enticed by their breasts. With dietary habits in the country improving, girls are beginning to hit puberty as young as 9, and are subject to the practice around at the same age.

Though only limited medical research has been done on the practice, Cameroonian women say breast ironing can lead to numerous physical issues, such as burns and deformations, not to mention psychological problems. The procedure has been compared to the custom of female circumcision/genital mutilation.


  1. Why should i feel sorry for Africa?

  2. I think the line between breath-taking ignorance & flat-out stupidity just got fuzzier.  This is truly pathetic.

  3. The average IQ for Cameroonians is 64. 70 is considered the cutoff point for mental retardation. The national HDI is 0.53. Beyond pity, there is little to be done.

  4. Why do I fear the "Graphic Content" is due to the pictures of breasts rather than than the mutilation?

  5. WTF - why can someone put some sense in these idiots?

  6. i think it's been shown that IQ tests are really just modernity tests. there is no real test for intelligence because intelligence is a human concept and not something that can be truly measured in a test or in a lab. 
    cameroonians have as much capacity for learning as you do, they simply do not have the resources to acquire the knowledge you and i have in the methods we have obtained it. 

    and to the others that have commented-get off your high horses. you all, again, have no higher capacity for knowledge than the average Cameroonian. the issue here, is not that they are all stupid idiots, as you all seem to think, it is the level of poverty at which Cameroon stands stagnant, which then lowers the level of education. 

    really, i would have expected more intelligent comments from atheists.

  7. <span>Notice that I make no claims as to their <span>potential to </span><span>acquire</span> knowledge. I sincerely hope that all humans have the same potential for intellect, though I am uncertain as to whether this has been established beyond doubt. I am only making a claim about their average <span>current</span> IQ, which, for whatever reason you might wish to propose, is pretty much abysmal and I think indisputably the cause of idiotic behavior like "breast ironing" of children. </span>

    <span>I've never really been convinced by the reactionary, handwavy arguments that IQ "is just some made up thing that doesn't mean anything"; it may not mean as much as some people like to claim, but it correlates HIGHLY with all the other factors one would expect such a measure to do if it were measuring a substantive quality of human cognition (eg. educational attainment, wage earnings, inversely WRT religiosity, etc.).</span>

  8. i'm not saying IQ tests and the overall concept of intelligence mean nothing, however, it seems as though you and pretty much everyone else that commented mention their IQ's and intellect without factoring in why it is low. SOMEONE (someone other than one of their members) needs to go in and help out these arguably retarded animals....
    they aren't stupid people. they just do not have the resources to attain the knowledge to know how damaging something like this would be to a child and how pointless it is. 

    and no, most of the arguments against the foundation of IQ tests are usually epistemological arguments as well as the objectivity of the questions on these tests. to me, thats far from "Handwavy".

  9. everything africanJuly 29, 2010 at 10:03 AM

    Hello there. This is a very serious issue. noting that, i would like to commend the author of this article. I would also be very happy to hear from the author through this, as i would like to discuss a project with the author. Thank you, very much...

  10. This is the first time I've heard about breast ironing. Horrible. I just hope that some people here will realize that IQ has very little (nothing) to do with this. It's a lack of educaton.

  11. :(  Poor girls! What if there start their period?