Site Loader
Rock Street, San Francisco

Presumably, there are religious and cultural factors for performing
Female Genital Mutilation. Before analysing those factors that might lead to such,
a brief definition and key information is necessary.

According to the World Health Organization, often abbreviated to WHO, Female
Genital Mutilation,

We Will Write a Custom Essay Specifically
For You For Only $13.90/page!

order now

“compromises all procedures that involve
partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to
the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.” (World Health Organization,
2017, n.p.).


From a medical point of view circumcision is the “1. Operation to remove part or all of the prepuce. (…)”
(Stedman, 2008, p. 315).

Modern literature does not prefer to make use of
the term Female Circumcision as it used to be. In the broadest sense, male and female
circumcision are both “cutting rituals” (Toubia & Izett, 1998, p. 3) without
any health benefits. However, female circumcision implies an equivalence to
male circumcision. When comparing both procedures, the procedure of male
circumci­sion contains removing the prepuce, whereas the procedure of female
circumcision con­tains amputating the vulva or parts of it. The physical damage
is irreversible due to invasiveness.

Excisors, perform the cutting ritual between the ages of four and
fourteen on female evolving from child to adult as a rite of passage (Toubia
& Izett, 1998). Geographically speaking, Africa has the highest prevalence
of modifying the vulva invasively. In 1989 the term Female Genital Mutilation,
often abbreviated to FGM, was supported and declared by the Inter-African
Committee on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children
(Toubia & Izett, 1998). The change of the terminology has then been adapted
from any organisation that engages in human rights work ever since.

According to United Nations International
Children’s Emergency Fund, often abbreviated to UNICEF, the exact number of girls
and young female adults who have undergone FGM still remain unknown to this
date. Many cases of FGM remain unreported. In spite of dark figures, UNICEF illustrates
with its statistical overview published in 2013, that at least 200 million
girls and women who are alive right now have undergone FGM globally (UNICEF,

At the 6oth plenary meeting in late
2012, attendances of the General Assembly make a promise to “intensifying global efforts for the
elimination of female genital mutilations” (United Nations, 2013, n.p.). Topic
of discussion was FGM and its political developments throughout the decade. The
aim is to intensify all global efforts for a faster and more effective elimination
of FGM. Even though this form of mutilation gains more recognition by
classifying it as harmful, abusive and as a violation against human rights, threatening
with consequences have not always made an impact on families who believe in FGM
or practitioners who will be portrayed over the course of this paper later on.

In July 1995, WHO held a gathering in Geneva and “convened a Technical
Working Group on Female Genital Mutilation” (Toubia & Izett, 1998, p. 5)
for inter alia classification and prevention purposes. WHO wanted to draw
attention to this purpose by dividing the procedure into four main types and
further by underlining the urge to eliminate FGM. Two years later WHO, UNICEF
and UNFPA, which stands for United Nations Population Fund, gave a universal
joint statement regarding classifications of different types of FGM. Their definition of each type remain valid to this
very day.

Type I is the most common type of FGM. It involves removing
the female prepuce entirely. Depending on the case, the removal includes the
excision of the clitoris (clitorydectomy) or just leaving it by removing it
partially. FGM is commonly performed by a female who is trained to practices. The
procedure starts with the traditional practitioner (excisor) holding the
clitoris between index finger and thumb to pull it out with force or “amputateed with
one stroke of a sharp object” (Toubia & Izett, 1998, p. 7). Medical gauzes
stop the bleeding. Nowadays practitioners sew together the deep wound for
medical purposes. However, there is no habit of applying antiseptic solution
before or after the procedure for sterilisation purposes 

Type II is the second common type to be performed for female circumcision
reasons. It involves removing the clitoris. In some cases, practitioners amputate
the labia minora partially and sometimes even entirely. The practitioner uses
the same techniques as described in Type I for performing the procedure. The
stitches “may or may not cover the urethra and part of the vaginal opening”
(Toubia & Izett, 1998, p. 7) leading to an accidental infibulation.

   Type III involves removing the vulva partially or entirely. Practitioners
remove  the clitoris and the labia minora using the same techniques as described
in Type I and II. “The raw edges of the labia majora are brought together to
fuse, using thorns, poultices or stitching to hold them in place (…)” (Toubia
& Izett, 1998, p. 7). After those procedures, the girl’s legs are tied
together for several weeks. The skin starts to heal and forms a visible scar which
will cover the urethra and the vagina opening. This makes sure that it is
physically impossible to have (premarital) intercourse. However, a tiny opening
at the bottom of the vulva will allow urine and menstrual blood to excrete.After marriage, performing intercourse will be only possible “after
gradual dilatation” (Toubia
& Izett, 1998, p. 8), if the opening is wide enough. The dilatation can
still take up to two years. In case of a rather small opening, it is tradition
the husband or female in-laws to cut open the infibulation using shattered
glass or a knife (Toubia & Izett, 1998).When giving birth, infibulation must turn into
defibulation in order to allow the young infant to exit the body. After delivery,
there will be a second infibulation performance on the mother. Since the
husband will be more pleased with a tighter vaginal opening, to create the same
sized opening before delivering is the primary goal. Women with Type III FGM
are more likely to experience some of the procedures more than once in their
life. The more they deliver vaginally, the more

Type IV remains unclassified and involves a
wide range of different procedures:

infibulation recurs.

Post Author: admin


I'm Anna!

Would you like to get a custom essay? How about receiving a customized one?

Check it out