Eyes wide cut: the American origins of Korea’s plastic surgery craze

by Laura Kurek


“Millard first considered altering the human eye while reconstructing eyebrows for burn victims. He began to keenly study the eye, socket, and folds, musing how to change it from “Oriental to Occidental.” He initially thought that he would never find a consenting patient to operate on, until a Korean translator approached him and, according to accounts from the era, asked to be “made into a round-eye.” “He felt that because of the squint in his slant eyes, Americans could not tell what he was thinking and consequently did not trust him,” Millard later wrote. “As this was partly true, I consented to do what I could.””

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