Here it is, in all its glory: The Toothy Vagina!
That monstrosity is inserted into a woman’s vagina and if a man tries to penetrate her against her will, the spikes — or teeth — inside the tube will “bite” into his penis and stay there until the entire contraption is removed by a surgeon. One wonders if such a device would have served a divine purpose in this horror story:
The sight of a blind-drunk young woman being assaulted by a Big Brother housemate in what may be the most public rape ever has turned the stomachs of millions of television viewers… which took place on Saturday afternoon after an extended drinking bout which ended in copious vomiting and apparent blackout for Molokwu, remain adamant about what they saw: Bezuidenhout lay down next to the comatose young woman and penetrated her vagina with his fingers.He carried on despite the pleas of another female housemate for him stop. Under the law in South Africa – where, on average, a woman is sexually assaulted every 40 seconds – such an act constitutes rape. Bezuidenhout, who is married, finally desisted and went off to sit by himself while drunkenly sniffing his fingers.
The myth of the “Toothy Vagina” — or “Vagina Dentata” — has a rich history in religious and cultural folklore. The idea of a woman capturing — or “chewing off” — a man’s member is ripe with imagined aggression and sensual denouement.
The matter of a Toothy Vagina is a curious study of the semiotic battle between male and female sexual personae. There is rich scholarship dealing with the Toothy Vagina:
The myth of the vagina dentata, or vagina with teeth, derives from primitive masculine dreads of the “mysteries” of women and sexual union. It evokes castration anxiety, whereby the man fears loss of the penis during intercourse, and more generally it relates to fears of weakness, impotence, or annihilation by incorporation (connected to unconscious notions of “returning to the womb”).
- Stories of the vagina dentata persist in aboriginal myths and legends (Egyptian, Indo-European, Greek, Native American, African), as well as in contemporary narratives, such as vulgar sexist jokes.
- Sublimated expressions of this dread underlie stories of post-coital loss of strength, such as the biblical story of Samson and Delilah, or the deep social resonance of the recent (1993) Lorena and John Wayne Bobbitt incident in America.
- Many narratives of “hero vs. monster” also rely on the myth: for instance, Oedipus and the Sphinx, whose mythic structure underlies Benchley’s novel, Jaws.
- Some cultural surgical practices, such as clitoridectomies and other female genital mutilations (including modern episiotomies), also relate to the myth. These practices physically inscribe an assertion of masculine domination that implies a dread of feminine powers.
Here’s a warning against the damage of a Toothy Vagina — and its awful cure — that is packed with mysterious religio-social undertones:
“There was a Rakshasa’s daughter who had teeth in her vagina. She used to live mostly as a tigress and kept ten or twelve tigers with her. When she saw a man, she would turn into a pretty girl, seduce him, cut off his penis, eat it herself and give the rest of his body to her tigers. “One day she met seven brothers in the jungle and married the eldest so that she could sleep with them all.After some time she took the eldest boy to where her tigers lived, made him lie with her, cut off his penis, ate it and gave his body to the tigers. “In the same way, she killed six of the brothers till only the youngest was left. When his turn came, the god who helped him sent him a dream. ‘If you go with the girl,’ said the god, ‘make an iron tube, put it into her vagina and break her teeth.’ “The boy did this, and when the tigers came for his body he climbed into a mango tree and made himself very small. The tigers chased him and the girl became very angry. He cursed her, ‘let nothing but your face remain!’
And so it was: she became a Chamgedri, which eats, excretes, urinates and copulates through one and the same aperture. “One of the mangoes opened and the boy crept inside. A parrot carried off the mango to a Raja’s palace. It dropped it, the fruit broke open, the boy emerged, and after various adventures, he married the Raja’s daughter.”
The Toothy Vagina is also fascinatingly dissected in this scholarly article, The “Vagina Dentata” and the “Immaculatus Uterus Divini Fontis” by Jill Raitt as she wonders on the story of a ravaging vagina and an immaculate conception:
The purpose of this article is to explore two primordial images which have provided a foundation for the caricatures of woman that are dominant in Christian theology and practice, the images of the “vagina dentata” (“vagina-with-teeth”) and that of the “immaculatus uterus divini fontis” (“immaculate womb of the divine font”).In her treatment of the “vagina dentata”, which she interprets as an expression of the universal male fear of the “castrating female,” the author considers the manifestations of the image in Christian church history, what has happened to women who have been the objects of the fear represented by the image, and how the male-dominated church has neutralized the female threat. While one might initially suppose that the “immaculatus uterus divini fontis” provides a positive counterpart for the decidedly negative image of the “vagina dentata,” the author asserts that it is in reality a symbol of woman as an utterly passive recipient. In the last section of the article, the author argues that the use of the metaphor of the perilous journey to describe life derives from the myth of the “vagina dentata” and from the myths of birth and rebirth related to it. She goes on to consider the possibility of viewing life through an image drawn from woman’s experience of herself and suggests that the cosmic egg might be such an image.
What is your take on this idea of a Toothy Vagina?
Have you ever encountered one — or wanted one?
If you are female, would you insert an artificial Toothy Vagina and walk around with it all day “just in case” — and if you would — what sort of reaction would you expect from the man who penetrates you against your will and finds that toothy surprise?
If you are male, how would you react if you found a Toothy Vagina pricking your penis?