Some Notes on Toilets

Sometimes you think that a topic would be interesting to research, but don’t have time to do it yourself. I figure that this is exactly what blogs were invented for. So, without further ado, here are some links about toilets presented without discussion (although the juxtaposition of stories is not always accidental). Feel free to add your own in the comments.

Taiwan’s Modern Toilet Restaurant:

Toilet Restaurant
Picture by Fun Fever.

Japan sniffs at Taiwan’s toilet culture:

Japanese tourists are said to be frequently distressed at the lack of clean public toilet facilities in Taiwan. In particular, they are horrified at the sight of bathroom trash bins filled with used toilet paper.

Mainland Toddler Poops In Taiwan Airport, Predictable Uproar Ensues:

In a Taiwan airport recently, someone snapped a picture of a toddler defecating onto a newspaper in the middle of the ground, reportedly with a bathroom nearby.

Toilet Paper: How America Convinced the World to Wipe

Currently, the United States spends more than $6 billion a year on toilet tissue—more than any other nation in the world. Americans, on average, use 57 squares a day and 50 lbs. a year.

Don’t Just Sit There! How bathroom posture affects your health:

there’s now some empirical evidence for the claim that defecation posture affects your body

Improving Women’s Status, One Bathroom at a Time

For thousands of women across India, the existence of a toilet near their workplace is no small thing. It affects women’s ability to work, their safety… and their mobility.

Bride, who demanded toilet after marriage, rewarded

Anita Bai Narre of Chichouli village of Betul district in Madhya Pradesh was handed a cheque for Rs. 5 lakh by Union Minister of Rural Development Jairam Ramesh, on behalf of Sulabh International, for standing up for her dignity on reaching her husband’s place and demanding the construction of a toilet.

Slavoj Zizek about toilets and ideology

UPDATE: Plumbing the depths: Toilets, transparency and modernity – a special issue of Postcolonial Studies.

UPDATE: “Here We Go Again: Toddler Poops In Airplane Aisle

10 thoughts on “Some Notes on Toilets

  1. What a photo. A recent news article remarks on calculations about the global need for water for hygiene, a lack of sanitation having been estimated as more expensive in the long run than clean toilets; I’m uncertain the calculations include the cost of water use with respect to other local resources or the regional environment: and

    Also, just to add to your notes in case you don’t already have this in there somewhere, there is a World Toilet Day:

  2. As a doc who has worked or lived in several countries, I could tell many stories of various customs, some of which have medical implications.
    Example: In rural Zimbabwe, our patients wouldn’t use toilets (including the pit type toilets that flushed in our hospital) because of the smell: They preferred the nearby woods… the local slang to defacate was “go to the forest”…Alas, the problem of water contamination and hookworm in crowded areas was a result.

  3. @Vidhi

    You know, that’s been on my “to do” list for a while, but I never seem to stop in Delhi long enough to make it over there. One of these days I will!

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