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Possible cultural and social effect of cheap and easy plastic surgery?

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  • Possible cultural and social effect of cheap and easy plastic surgery?

    Question. Either a god, a highly trained exalt, a sorcerous working, or a manse. Either way, reconstruction and plastic surgery on the level of modern day.

    And added to this is small amounts of body modification. You got anemia? There's a cure for that. Asthma? Gout? A chronic cough? Done. A tendency for sensitive skin? Cured. Youre stunted in growth because of childhood malnutrition? They can add a foot to your height.

  • #2
    I'm sure there's any number of science fiction stories exploring this kind of possibility.

    But for starters:

    If our doctor remains in one place long enough (or it's from a source that cannot be readily moved, like a sorcerous working upon a location, or a manse), expect that roads along the way will become more active. The locale where this force for body modification is located will see travellers. Expect to see banditry, then more caravan guards, then towns trying to prepare for the influx of commerce.

    Some will come for vanity, some will come for health--perhaps hoping against hope, like Stephen Strange, that this miracle-chirurgeon can treat them where all else has failed. Some will appeal to the god or exalt or manse-keeper's pity, others to their purse, and others to their sense of self-preservation. If it's within the reach of the Realm, expect them to try to exert direct political force, possibly declaring a Wyld Hunt if the force behind this is blasphemous enough to outweigh its benefits. If it's not, the Guild may try to nail our wonder-worker to the wall with debt, to either directly or indirectly seize control of this operation.

    But let's get away from the realpolitik this asset would incur.

    Assuming that this location has access to an amoral force that can be fairly predictably compelled to do medical-grade reconstructive surgery, that for whatever reason cannot be walled off from whoever seeks it. The locals are significantly healthier than many; not preternaturally so, so much as just...less subject to a lot of things that would incidentally raise mortality. A lot of human variance that might be considered "flawed"--regardless of whether it's an impact on quality of life at all--is just a foreign concept now.

    And when physical perfection is more easily achievable, it becomes boring.

    At this point, it would probably be something like a status symbol in the area to have some sort of reversible maiming with, for lack of a better term, mechanical penalties. It says, "Yes, I *could* restore my hand to functionality within the fortnight, if not the day, but I have servants to pour my drink, to defend me, and to write for me. What need have I of two of my own?"

    Scarification, now easily reversible, becomes a form of self-adornment for the masses, a fashion statement to be tried and undone at one's own leisure, leading to a culture that might be interpreted by visitors as discomfiting masochists.

    You have the potential for a very interesting culture here, indeed.

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    • #3
      Ooh. You mean like large amounts of tattoos and other forms of body modification?

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Accelerator View Post
        Question. Either a god, a highly trained exalt, a sorcerous working, or a manse. Either way, reconstruction and plastic surgery on the level of modern day..
        Plastic surgery is explicitly possible by an essence 1 Lunar using Flesh Sculpting Art.

        Reconstructive surgery may require an essence 3 Solar using Wholeness of Body Restoration or such.
        Last edited by Greyman; 10-27-2020, 06:00 AM.

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        • #5
          Since Exalted doesn't have Social Security numbers and Driver's Licenses, face changing surgery and birthmark removal would allow for a lot of identity shedding. Criminals, Spies, Celebrities, Royalty, and a lot of others would pay handsomely to be someone else.

          Of course you'd have a ton of vanity projects and birth defects to fix, so you'd quickly be rolling in cash. There would be a huge boom for Luxury clientele since scarcity drives up price and you'd have a whole pop up industry catering to rich travelers.

          But I think the most interesting thing would be people paying to have their identity changed.


          Please be warned: this is not champagne, this is most likely a duck.
          -Chausse

          Message me for Japanese translations.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
            Since Exalted doesn't have Social Security numbers and Driver's Licenses, face changing surgery and birthmark removal would allow for a lot of identity shedding. Criminals, Spies, Celebrities, Royalty, and a lot of others would pay handsomely to be someone else.

            Of course you'd have a ton of vanity projects and birth defects to fix, so you'd quickly be rolling in cash. There would be a huge boom for Luxury clientele since scarcity drives up price and you'd have a whole pop up industry catering to rich travelers.

            But I think the most interesting thing would be people paying to have their identity changed.

            And now i'm thinking that this kind of options could make the individual with control of such a resource into something of an unintentional major rival to Shalrina, the Daimyo of Masks, from Games of Divinity.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Mockery View Post

              And when physical perfection is more easily achievable, it becomes boring.

              At this point, it would probably be something like a status symbol in the area to have some sort of reversible maiming with, for lack of a better term, mechanical penalties. It says, "Yes, I *could* restore my hand to functionality within the fortnight, if not the day, but I have servants to pour my drink, to defend me, and to write for me. What need have I of two of my own?"
              Hmm, going by historical example of societies with the perspective on human rights that seems to be the norm in the Age of Sorrows, I'd find it more plausible that the status symbol would be "we get to avoid the pain and dysphoria that comes from missing limbs, and we go to great lengths to withhold that from the masses".

              Originally posted by Mockery
              Scarification, now easily reversible, becomes a form of self-adornment for the masses, a fashion statement to be tried and undone at one's own leisure, leading to a culture that might be interpreted by visitors as discomfiting masochists.
              Welll scarification is a thing that cultures have performed without being able to reverse it. This sounds more like "their perspective on it is different" rather than "this removes the one sensible obstacle to it".


              I have approximate knowledge of many things.
              Write up as I play Xenoblade Chronicles.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                Hmm, going by historical example of societies with the perspective on human rights that seems to be the norm in the Age of Sorrows, I'd find it more plausible that the status symbol would be "we get to avoid the pain and dysphoria that comes from missing limbs, and we go to great lengths to withhold that from the masses".
                Well... yes. this happens for a given measure of ease.

                Indeed, every member of the ruling class of Ysyr is expected to be able to use their sorcerous prowess, at least once, to perfect their own physique, in order to distinguish themselves from the mutation marred slave masses.

                Still, a sorcerous working is not exactly "cheap and easy", and by definition every one is a unique project.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post

                  Hmm, going by historical example of societies with the perspective on human rights that seems to be the norm in the Age of Sorrows, I'd find it more plausible that the status symbol would be "we get to avoid the pain and dysphoria that comes from missing limbs, and we go to great lengths to withhold that from the masses".
                  Mmh. I hear what you're saying, and under other circumstances I'd agree, especially w/a penal code that maims those found guilty; those in power can undo whatever they suffer, while the impoverished are likely compelled to wear a skin documenting an ever-growing list of sins.

                  However, full limb restoration seemed behind what was suggested, and I explicitly included in my own assumptions that restricting access was off the table, if only because that felt like it went against the spirit of "cheap and easy" and because "the mighty cordon off a previous resource for themselves" feels like the more obvious way to go.

                  Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                  Welll scarification is a thing that cultures have performed without being able to reverse it. This sounds more like "their perspective on it is different" rather than "this removes the one sensible obstacle to it".
                  As intended.

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                  • #10
                    Which reminds me.

                    They can fix teeth. Even lost teeth. It might be one of the few places in Creation you can get your teeth fixed by modern medicine.

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