Xiamen University in southeast China's Fujian Province has recently opened an eyebrow-raising optional course on the unusual subject of breast aesthetics.
A total of 110 students selected the course when it was first introduced. Now the audience has increased to 120, 10 percent of whom are male students.
Professor Ouyang Zhong, who is also the director of the Breast Surgery Department of No. 1 Hospital of Xiamen, said he opened the lecture series in the hope that the students can acquire knowledge on issues affecting breasts and prevent breast diseases.
"During the early days of society, the breast is just a nursing organ. Through the changes of society, it now also has an aesthetic function," he said.
"In the Tang Dynasty (618-907), women with large breasts were regarded as beautiful," he said, adding that such a trend has since become less pronounced.
The course has also brought into the limelight other "bizarre" courses universities have opened.
Back in 2012, Xiamen University opened a course on climbing trees in a bid to train the students' physical fitness.
The University of Electronic Science and Technology of China this year opened a course on culinary arts, introducing students to traditional Chinese food culture, ingredients and the techniques of making Sichuan dishes.
The Central South University started a course on the fictional detective Conan and the "mystery of chemistry", which was sought after by the numerous fans of the super-sleuth cartoon character.
Chongqing Energy College introduced an analysis of group strategies in the hugely popular multi-player video game "Defense of the Ancients," into a course on e-sports.
Courses on female self-cultivation are also hot among students. Jinling College of Nanjing Normal University, for instance, opened a compulsory course that teaches girls common knowledge in life, psychical health care and cultivation of charms.
Chongqing University of Post and Telecommunications teaches students on how to become a "goddess" in one of their cosmetics classes.
To avoid suicide among university students, Changsha Social Work College has introduced a course on the funeral services industry and Guangzhou University has, in the past 15 years, held a course on "life and death", which discusses the issues of life, disease, ageing, accidents and dying.
(Source: Guangzhou Daily/Translated and edited by Women of China)
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