Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Sex Fact #449

Female genital cutting (FGC) or female circumcision, which is more commonly called Female genital mutilation (FGM) by countries and people who oppose the practice, is any procedure involving the partial or total removal of the external female genitalia.

The reasons for doing so range from 'cultural', 'religious' or 'non-therapeutic reasons'. Those in favor of it argue that it ensures virginity before marriage and also, surprisingly, that the removal of the clitoris in particular reassure men that they are not having sex with another man in societies where the clitoris is seen as a small penis.

In some countries, such as Sudan, the social stigma for remaining uncircumcised is harsh, as indicated by the fact that being called “the son of an uncircumcised mother” is a most intense insult.

So, in other words, it is the wolf of male sexual insecurity dressed up as the sheep of traditon and religion yet again.

FGC/FGM is nearly always used to describe traditional or religious procedures on a minor, which requires the parents' consent because of the age of the girl. When the procedure is performed on and with the consent of an adult it is generally called clitoridectomy, or it may be part of labiaplasty or vaginoplasty. 

It also generally does not refer to procedures used in gender reassignment/ modification of intersexuals.

FGC/FGM is practiced throughout the world, but mainly in Asia and Africa. Opposition against it by many groups including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations (UN) continues to mount. The main concerns are regarding the consent (or lack thereof, in most cases) of the patient, and subsequently the safety and long-term consequences of the procedures. 

Info Source: Al-Krenawi, A., &Wiesel-Lev, R. (1999). Attitudes toward and perceived Psychological impact of female circumcision as practiced among the Bedouin-Arabs of the Negev. Hamilton, T. (2002). Skin Flutes and Velvet Gloves. New York: St. Martin’s Press. Vissandjee, B., Kantiebo, M., Levine, A., & N’Dejuru, R. (2003). The cultural context of gender identity; Female genital excision and infibulation. Crooks, Robert L. & Baur, Karla (2004) Our Sexuality 9th edition. Wadsworth Publishing Company. The World Health Organization.Braun, Virginia: "In search of (better) sexual pleasure: female genital ‘cosmetic’ surgery". Sexualities.

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