This chapter examines the political issues raised by plastic surgery that alters the so-called racial or ethnic features. It discusses the history of this medical practice in the United States and how it has been practiced in two non-Western countries: South Korea and Brazil. Race is not a quality of the face or body given in nature, but rather has been enacted by surgery differently in different historical periods and nations. This comparative perspective shows that critiques of racial plastic surgery should take into account local contexts of practice. Some political concerns raised by this practice, however, cut across regions. Racial surgeries reflect wider social inequalities and an emerging medical discourse, which claims to reject the explicit whitening goals of the past, in fact continues to pathologize non-white facial features.
|Title of host publication
|The Routledge Companion to Beauty Politics
|Maxine Leeds Craig
|Number of pages
|Published - 22 Jul 2021
|Routledge Companions to Gender