Kuro5hin.org: technology and culture, from the trenches
create account | help/FAQ | contact | links | search | IRC | site news
[ Everything | Diaries | Technology | Science | Culture | Politics | Media | News | Internet | Op-Ed | Fiction | Meta | MLP ]
We need your support: buy an ad | premium membership

[P]
Koro: A Natural History of Penis Panics

By Vaughan in Culture
Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 10:56:53 AM EST
Tags: Culture (all tags)
Culture

A woman in Nigeria narrowly escaped a recent lynching from an enraged crowd after a market trader claimed she had stolen his penis. This is an example of Koro, (as it is most commonly known in the West), a belief that the genitals have been stolen, or in other parts of the world, that they are fatally shrinking into the body. Bizarre as it sounds, the belief in Koro is several thousand years old and occurs internationally. This article examines historical and contemporary accounts of Koro and looks at some of the explanations for this intriguing phenomenon.


Belief in fatally retracting genitals, or a belief in genital theft, is usually known by the name 'Koro'. The word is of uncertain origin but is thought to derive from the Malaysian word for tortoise, (sometimes locally used as a slang term for the penis), perhaps with a nod to the tortoises' ability to retract its head into its body. It takes several forms, including a fast spreading social belief that tends to cause panics and widespread concern, and a more isolated form, usually the problem of a lone individual.

Koro as a social belief
To many people it is perhaps surprising that a belief in Koro can be particularly widespread but this belies that fact that the belief has a long and distinguished history. It is first mentioned in China (known there as 'suo-yang') where it is cited in the ancient Chinese text 'The Yellow Emperor's Classic of Internal Medicine', a traditional medical manuscript which dates from about 300 BC. Similar descriptions appear in Chinese volumes throughout the ages, and the idea exists as a folk belief among some Chinese and Asian peoples today.

Minor Koro epidemics have seized localised parts of Asia at various times, including a well documented 1967 outbreak in Singapore. As the panic spread hospitals became inundated with people worried that their penises were shrinking into their body. Many had resorted to pegs, clamps and even a constant firm grip from concerned family members attempting to prevent the member from vanishing entirely. According to an analysis of the incident reported in the Singapore Medical Journal, the panic stemmed from rumours that pork, poisoned from a swine fever inoculation, was causing genital shrinkage. Similar outbreaks in the Guangdong region in China have been related to an alleged sighting of the beautiful Hu Li Jung, a genital thieving fox spirit traditionally thought to wander the countryside in search of male victims.

In affected parts of Africa, Koro is more commonly related to the work of sorcerers or black magic, and involves alleged penis theft rather than retraction. The belief is of unknown vintage (historical sources are scarce) but periodically creates panics, sometimes resulting in fatal consequences for the unfortunately accused. Recent outbreaks have been reported in Nigeria, Benin and Ghana and usually involve the public accusation of penis theft, often after an unexpected or unwelcome touch from a stranger.

Whilst penis theft would seem a fairly simple charge to refute, victims in an 1990 Nigerian outbreak (reported on by psychiatrist Sunny Ilechukwu) often believed that their penises were returned at the point of public accusation. Some even went as far as undress to prove their accusation to onlookers, subsequently claiming that their 'returned' penis had been replaced but was shrunk, leading them to think it must be a ghost penis or perhaps the wrong one.

Isolated Koro Sufferers
Cases of Koro have also been reported in most nationalities including American, European and Middle-Eastern persons. Sufferers tend to show a couple of marked differences to Asian and African Koro sufferers, mainly that they tend not to believe that genital retraction will be fatal, and that it tends to present more commonly in the context of mental illness, rather than social scares. A recent study reported on three cases of Koro in American males who all formed penis retraction beliefs after smoking Cannabis. In these cases the researchers suggested that Koro was brought on by a combination of pre-existing worries over penis shape, anxiety and bad reaction to situational cannabis use. Perhaps due to a `bad-trip' experience or its ability to trigger or exacerbate psychosis and anxiety in a minority of individuals.

Koro in a Greek Cypriot man was reported in one medical case study from the British Journal of Psychiatry. In this instance the person was concerned that his penis was shrinking into his body, a claim accompanied by depression, psychotic symptoms and heightened anxiety. The gentleman concerned was treated by doctors with mood stabilising and anti-psychotic medication after which his penis-related concerns abated.

Other case studies have reported on Koro after depression following stroke, in relation to phobia for AIDS, after a brain tumour and during schizophrenia. In some cases the individuals had heard about Koro before suffering themselves, an unlikely belief perhaps triggered by later unfortunate events, but in others the belief seemed to arise without previous cultural contact.

Mad, Bad and Dangerous to Know ?
Freud believed that castration anxiety was an important stage of personality development, and although this is not a popular view among psychologists today, it is not difficult to see how Koro beliefs may relate to many common sexual anxieties. Body satisfaction and worries over correct and desirable body shape are also common, and in mental illness they may reach delusional intensity. Body Dysmorphic Disorder is a syndrome where sufferers come to believe that a particular part of their body (often regarded as quite normal by third parties) is particularly ugly, unshapely or undesirable. Whilst there is no evidence that Koro may be directly related to this disorder, it is easy to see how body concerns can be incorporated or even fuel unlikely beliefs.

The type of social Koro that creates panics could be easily dismissed as the result of primitive thinking of superstitious people, but as sociologist Robert Bartholomew has documented, industrialised societies have much modern history of similarly unusual social scares. This includes not one, but several widespread panics sparked by dramatisations of the Orson Welles play `War of the Worlds'. This would suggest that society is great shaper of our beliefs, and we are much more likely to believe what our neighbours believe than we would like to admit.

Further Reading
Several excellent analyses of the Koro phenomenon have been written by Robert Bartholomew. The following books are highly recommended for extensive references and an excellent critique of our understanding of Koro (and other strange beliefs and social panics). The first is perhaps a little easier for the non-academic reader.

Bartolomew, R.E. (2001) Little Green Men, Meowing Nuns and Head-hunting Panics: A study of mass psychogenic illness and social delusion. North Carolina: McFarland Publishers.

Bartholomew, R.E. (2000) Exotic Deviance: Medicalizing cultural idioms from strangeness to illness. Colorado: University of Colorado Press.

References to medical reports of Koro can be obtained by searching PubMed using the keyword `koro'
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/PubMed/

Sponsors

Voxel dot net
o Managed Hosting
o VoxCAST Content Delivery
o Raw Infrastructure

Login

Related Links
o escaped a recent lynching
o The Yellow Emperor's Classic of Internal Medicine
o analysis of the incident
o Similar outbreaks
o fatal consequences
o Nigeria
o Benin
o Ghana
o recent study
o one medical case study
o Body Dysmorphic Disorder
o several widespread panics
o Little Green Men, Meowing Nuns and Head-hunting Panics: A study of mass psychogenic illness and social delusion
o Exotic Deviance: Medicalizing cultural idioms from strangeness to illness
o PubMed
o http://www .ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/PubMed/
o Also by Vaughan


Display: Sort:
Koro: A Natural History of Penis Panics | 55 comments (47 topical, 8 editorial, 0 hidden)
A Bouquet (1.50 / 8) (#6)
by r00t on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 09:15:10 AM EST

Bouquet

-It's not so much what you have to learn if you accept weird theories, it's what you have to unlearn. - Isaac Asimov

+1 FP (1.66 / 3) (#8)
by dvchaos on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 09:29:06 AM EST

Purely because it's something light and entertaining .. all that other bullshit is usually grossley incorrect anyway.

I don't know... (4.00 / 1) (#21)
by nurglich on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 01:15:35 PM EST

If some vile witch stole my penis, I don't think I'd be entertained...

------------------------------------------
"There are no bad guys or innocent guys. There's just a bunch of guys!" --Ben Stiller, Zero Effect

[ Parent ]
You've been exposed! (4.85 / 7) (#10)
by IHCOYC on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 09:58:36 AM EST

The great thing about koro, as a disease, is that not only is it apparently highly contagious; you risk being infected just by knowing what it is.

Oh well. Better koro than kuru, anyways.

GraySkull is home to the anima, the all-knowing woman who gives power to the otherwise ineffectual man. -- Jeff Coleman

Re: You've been exposed! (3.75 / 4) (#30)
by jxg on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 04:06:34 PM EST

Oh well. Better koro than kuru, anyways.

Or kuro.

[ Parent ]

Gaah! (none / 0) (#40)
by IHCOYC on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 10:16:07 PM EST

I'd hate to encounter the bearded clam!

GraySkull is home to the anima, the all-knowing woman who gives power to the otherwise ineffectual man. -- Jeff Coleman
[ Parent ]

-1 racist (1.22 / 31) (#11)
by turmeric on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 10:19:24 AM EST

the western world has plenty of fucked up practices

Re: racist (4.33 / 3) (#12)
by alfrede01 on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 10:32:01 AM EST

sure it does, and you're welcome to write about them.

[ Parent ]
I think you misunderstand racism (5.00 / 2) (#13)
by Vaughan on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 10:38:32 AM EST

the western world has plenty of fucked up practices

Racism is prejudice or discrimination based purely on race. Simply pointing out cultural differences in the way beliefs are held and maintained is not racist nor has it ever been.

For example, would pointing out that a particular religious belief is more widely held by one culture than another be considered racist ? Of course not.

In fact, if you read the article the last paragraph points out that similarly unlikely beliefs are commonly held and communicated by western societies in the same manner. The references mentioned document many other examples.

Racism is a conclusion based on prejudice, not a discussion of differences. There is a fundamental difference which I think you have overlooked.



[ Parent ]

so... (4.00 / 1) (#15)
by Work on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 11:05:47 AM EST

studying the practices and interesting bits of humanity around the world, and then reporting on them, is racist?

[ Parent ]
Yes.. (none / 0) (#24)
by cevik on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 01:44:05 PM EST

It's official now.. all anthropology students are officially racist pigs..

[ Parent ]
Yeah, fast food! n/t (none / 0) (#20)
by sbash on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 01:07:08 PM EST



|_
"Eating curry with the boys? You must be British or boring" - Stinky Bottoms
[ Parent ]
Interesting beliefs across the world (4.75 / 16) (#14)
by the on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 10:58:33 AM EST

This would suggest that society is great shaper of our beliefs
Most of the population of the US believe the creator of the universe (with whom many believe themselves to be in direct communication) fathered a son, by a virgin who remained a virgin even after the process, whom he subsequently allowed to be killed through his inaction despite his omnipotence, and that this was a morally perfect action. This belief is far less popular across Europe and almost non-existent in most societies of the Middle East.

You don't have to look much beyond your own nose to conclude that society is a shaper of one's beliefs!

--
The Definite Article

Re: Interesting beliefs (5.00 / 1) (#17)
by khallow on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 11:45:56 AM EST

Most of the population of the US believe the creator of the universe (with whom many believe themselves to be in direct communication) fathered a son, by a virgin who remained a virgin even after the process, whom he subsequently allowed to be killed through his inaction despite his omnipotence, and that this was a morally perfect action. This belief is far less popular across Europe and almost non-existent in most societies of the Middle East.

Your example is correct. OTOH, it is interesting that all societies have dogmatic beliefs of this sort. Ie, something to explain what happens after you die, why you should do certain things, etc.

Also, I dispute that Europe is really so much less "Christian" than the US. Sounds like some sort of myth. It's just that the US has a different quality of religion. Ie, most of the firebrands went to the New World over the last few centuries. The evangelizing types are by definition more obvious than the staid types. Hence the US appears to have more.

I'd wager that the US also has a more competitive religious market. So the US might have more effective evangelizers too. So how long before Europe starts seeing the more successful US religions (say by rate of growth) like the Church of Latter Day Saints, American Islam, or Scientology? ;-)

Stating the obvious since 1969.
[ Parent ]

Europe less Christian (4.00 / 1) (#22)
by the on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 01:24:01 PM EST

There have been many surveys comparing Europe to the US. Far fewer people admit to believing in God in Europe than they do in the US (apart from in Ireland and Poland) for example. This has been reported many times in many different places.

However you are correct to point out that the US is exporting religion to Europe - especially evangelical Christianity in the UK.

--
The Definite Article
[ Parent ]

less belief, more institutionalization (5.00 / 1) (#26)
by Delirium on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 01:45:42 PM EST

Well, the less belief only really applies to maybe 2/3 of Europe -- Ireland, Poland, Greece, and probably one or two other countries I'm missing have very devoutly Christian populations. But in the rest of them, Christianity is still highly institutionalized. In many countries, a Christian church (which one depends on the country) gets significant government funding (Church of England in the UK, Greek Orthodox Church in Greece, I forget which Protestant variety in Germany, etc.). In Greece they even put your religion on your government-mandated ID card (in order to stigmatize non-Christians?). And of course the Christian Democrats are nearly omnipresent in Europe.

[ Parent ]
The Church of England may be the state... (none / 0) (#27)
by the on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 02:02:57 PM EST

...religion in the UK but that doesn't actually have much impact on people. The Church of England is just about the most insipid religion on Earth and you probably make a more significant statement of belief when you say you like to pour the milk in before the tea than when you admit you're an Anglican.

--
The Definite Article
[ Parent ]
I'll second that (4.00 / 1) (#35)
by ajm on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 05:50:14 PM EST

Religion has far less impact on public political life in the UK with it's established church than it does in the US with it's suposed separation of church and state. Of course in the US many more people claim to go to church than actually go. Many seem to feel that they ought to say that they believe and practice even when they don't. The UK doesn't suffer from that particular problem.

[ Parent ]
Church(es) in Germany (none / 0) (#44)
by nefertari on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 06:48:09 AM EST

In Germany the Catholic and the Protestant Church are nearly equally strong. Some regions are protestant, some are catholic. These are quite heavily mixed due to some wars and after that some agreements about the religion. One is a agreement that was made in Augsburg (Augsburger Religionsfriede in German) that stated: "cuius regio eius religio" (the ruler of a region decided upon the religion of his people). Since there were many small states in Germany it is so mixed.

About the government funding: There is a tax called Kirchensteuer (Churchtax), this goes to the church of your choice (without a church you don't have to pay it), the government gets a little of this as a fee for doing this work for the churches.

There are also some church-funded schools,those are paid 90% by the state, but the churches have a big influence in the choice of the teachers for these schools.



[ Parent ]
Maybe never (5.00 / 1) (#34)
by roystgnr on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 05:34:25 PM EST

The LDS are a fast growing religion, but at the moment that's mainly from baptisms in Latin America and the former USSR; they've had missionaries saturating Western Europe for a century and have membership numbers stable or even decreasing in most countries there. Europe has been in relatively close contact with Islam for centuries, and I don't see how "American Islam" is going to radically change that relationship. Scientology vastly overstates it's membership numbers in the US; I doubt they're any different in the rest of the world.

[ Parent ]
Scientology is quite prevalent in Germany (nt) (none / 0) (#36)
by Captain Segfault on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 06:06:22 PM EST



[ Parent ]
Comparison to animals (4.40 / 5) (#16)
by chemista on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 11:33:43 AM EST

One thing not mentioned so far is the fact that in many other mammal species, the male's penis does in fact 'contract' completely into the body when the animal is not pheromonally aroused. It is an interesting question whether this observation may in fact be the origin of some of these stories.
Stop reminding people about the overvalued stock market! I'm depending on that overvalued stock market to retire some day! - porkchop_d_clown
Female version ? (5.00 / 3) (#18)
by salsaman on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 11:50:12 AM EST

Is there anything like a female version of Koro ? For example, women who imagine that their breasts are increasing in size each day ?

I guess that since most women seem to worry more about their bodies anyway, and since womens' bodies change through pregnancy and menopause, that such things would be relatively rare.

Female Koro (5.00 / 2) (#31)
by Vaughan on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 04:18:23 PM EST

Is there anything like a female version of Koro ?

Indeed there is, to quote from Bartholomew's Exotic Deviance (p101):

Another Koro episode transpired in northeast Thailand between approximately November and December 1976, affecting an estimated 2,000 people, primarily rural Thai residents in the border provinces of Maha Sarakham, Nakhon Phanom, Nong Khai and Udon Thani. Symptoms included the perception of genital shrinkage and impotence among males, whereas females typically reported sexual frigidity, with breast and vulva shrinkage.

And again from p102:
Another epidemic of koro occured in the Assam, Meghalya, and Bengal regions of India during July and September 1982. Cases number in the thousands, as males claimed penile shrinkage and females perceived their breasts were getting smaller.


[ Parent ]
floating womb (none / 0) (#42)
by SocratesGhost on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 01:27:44 AM EST

This was first imagined by Plato, but it held sway through the Middle Ages. Apparently, the womb of an undersexed woman has the tendency to drift around inside women. If a woman goes untreated long enough, the womb may find it's way up to her throat and strangle her.

-Soc
I drank what?


[ Parent ]
Reminds me of something I read once (none / 0) (#45)
by salsaman on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 07:18:14 AM EST

Apparently in the Middle Ages, a woman became pregnant and her husband was called up to the army.

A friend of her husband's visited her while the husband was off fighting. He said to the woman "well I see your husband has got you pregnant, but has he made the baby's left leg ?"

"The baby's left leg ?", she asked innocently. "Why yes. Your husband got you pregnant, but you need to make the beast with two backs once more, in order to form the baby's left leg".

Well, the woman obviously didn't want to give birth to a deformed baby, so the two had sex.

The next day the man returned, and asked the same thing about the baby's right leg, claiming that they would need to do the same thing to make the baby's right leg. The next day was the left arm, then the right arm, nose, eyes, etc.

I forget now how the tale ended. I guess the guy came back from the war and shot his former friend with an arrow or something.

[ Parent ]

hysteria (none / 0) (#52)
by livus on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 11:15:00 PM EST

That would be "hysteria". In a modified form the theory held sway in the C19th, too.

---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]
Belief in Koro (4.60 / 5) (#19)
by CodeWright on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 12:46:58 PM EST

A guaranteed indicator of impotence and stupidity since 300BC!

--
"Humanity's combination of reckless stupidity and disrespect for the mistakes of others is, I think, what makes us great." --
Koro? (4.50 / 2) (#23)
by ch3ryl on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 01:41:48 PM EST

Tortoise in Malaysian is Kura-kura

Yup (none / 0) (#55)
by SteelX on Wed Sep 18, 2002 at 06:59:49 PM EST

Yup, the Malaysian word (or more precisely, the Malay word) for tortoise is kura-kura. I guess that's why the story says that the word koro "is thought to derive from the Malaysian word for tortoise."

Are you Malaysian btw? I'm just wondering how many fellow Malaysians post on tech forums. :)

[ Parent ]

Burden of Proof (5.00 / 3) (#25)
by hatshepsut on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 01:44:43 PM EST

Let's all just place the burden of proof on the person who wants to make the accusation. Before they publicly accuse anyone, they have to demonstrate, to impartial witnesses, that the penis has shrunk or disappeared....

Hmmm, considering that this would involve altogether too much flashing, forget I said anything.

Anyone else find any indication of exactly how the penis-stealing miscreants are supposed to be making off with the "goods", or is that sort of skepticism going to result in becoming the co-accused?

I also wonder if most/all of the accused are women, as in this case. Is this a body-image thing, or a phobia regarding women?

That explains it (4.33 / 3) (#29)
by Eccles on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 03:52:16 PM EST

So that Nigerian spam scam must be people trying to raise money for penis enlargement surgery after a bewitchment...

Another interesting aspect (2.00 / 5) (#32)
by medham on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 04:46:03 PM EST

Is the koro disease in New Guinea, closely related to BSE, and caused by prions, which are indestructible, short of kryptonic fusion.

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.

You mean Kuru (3.00 / 1) (#37)
by TheOnlyCoolTim on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 06:11:36 PM EST

That was an inferior comment, sir.

Tim
"We are trapped in the belly of this horrible machine, and the machine is bleeding to death."
[ Parent ]

Some cheek (2.00 / 2) (#43)
by medham on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 03:46:29 AM EST

I'll have you know that I'm considered the most hard-hitting commentator on K5, and have been for quite some time now.

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.
[ Parent ]

That's true (5.00 / 1) (#46)
by CodeWright on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 09:12:10 AM EST

You do consider yourself the most hard-hitting commentator on K5.

At best, everyone else humors you like a senile old uncle.

--
"Humanity's combination of reckless stupidity and disrespect for the mistakes of others is, I think, what makes us great." --Parent ]
Humors (5.00 / 1) (#50)
by medham on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 05:30:06 PM EST

Worships, fears, it's all good.

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.
[ Parent ]

It may be good (none / 0) (#51)
by CodeWright on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 07:47:53 PM EST

But that's why it's oh so bad.

--
"Humanity's combination of reckless stupidity and disrespect for the mistakes of others is, I think, what makes us great." --Parent ]
Marijuana can cause an estrogen increase in men. (4.00 / 2) (#33)
by confrontationman on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 05:18:22 PM EST

The results are mixed but a search on google for marijuana and estrogen makes me want to limit my dube intake, just in case.

Apparently heavy usage can result in serious shrinkage. If that's true and you're a weed dealer, I guess you could rightly be accused of Koro.



I'm not sure about that estrogen thingee (3.00 / 1) (#38)
by Hillman on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 06:56:55 PM EST

But i heard that Meth can shrink your dick while you're tripping. Not permanent but it must scare the shit out of you.

[ Parent ]
That explains my nicely budding breasts (nt) (4.00 / 1) (#49)
by Meatbomb on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 04:27:49 PM EST



_______________

Good News for Liberal Democracy!

[ Parent ]
This is prevalent in America too... (2.42 / 7) (#39)
by faustus on Mon Sep 16, 2002 at 08:48:55 PM EST

...however it is more sublimated than in other, less "modern" countries like Nigera, which still clings to a form of Islamic law. In the United States, suffering Koro is generally subconscious, causing for a subsequent, subconscious "reafirmation" of the phallic member.

The general sufferer is a sexually repressed, God-fearing conservative, who makes up for his American "Koro" by buying more guns than he will ever need.

Better than (none / 0) (#47)
by CodeWright on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 09:13:12 AM EST

Beating random women to a pulp -- or are you a misogynist?

--
"Humanity's combination of reckless stupidity and disrespect for the mistakes of others is, I think, what makes us great." --Parent ]
Oh, But ... (none / 0) (#53)
by icastel on Wed Sep 18, 2002 at 03:38:42 PM EST

...there are some that do that.


-- I like my land flat --
[ Parent ]
This is but one special case of mass hysteria (none / 0) (#41)
by annenk38 on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 12:30:33 AM EST

There are many documented cases of mass hysteria, as well as psychosomatic illnesses. Of the more recent domestic cases is "the itch" reported by the schoolchildren in several U.S. states. Among the better-known cases is the Gulf War Syndrome.

And if my left hand causes me to stumble as well -- what do I cut it off with? -- Harry, Prince of Wales (The Blackadder)
Grow your own (none / 0) (#48)
by GavinWheeler on Tue Sep 17, 2002 at 09:18:08 AM EST

At least the poor victims of these nasty willy-thiefs can now grow a replacement. Even if it only has the strength of a ninety-year-old's.

See this article

From the CNN article on Ghana: (none / 0) (#54)
by unDees on Wed Sep 18, 2002 at 05:22:02 PM EST

Police and government officials dismiss the stories as the work of thieves, who... pick people's pockets.
Wait a minute. A bunch of thieves make up stories about stealing things from your pants, so that they can... steal things from your pants.

I don't get it.

Your account balance is $0.02; to continue receiving our quality opinions, please remit payment as soon as possible.

Koro: A Natural History of Penis Panics | 55 comments (47 topical, 8 editorial, 0 hidden)
Display: Sort:

kuro5hin.org

[XML]
All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. The Rest 2000 - Present Kuro5hin.org Inc.
See our legalese page for copyright policies. Please also read our Privacy Policy.
Kuro5hin.org is powered by Free Software, including Apache, Perl, and Linux, The Scoop Engine that runs this site is freely available, under the terms of the GPL.
Need some help? Email help@kuro5hin.org.
My heart's the long stairs.

Powered by Scoop create account | help/FAQ | mission | links | search | IRC | YOU choose the stories!