Female Genital Mutilation

Powerful Essays
Also called female circumcision, FGC is defined as “all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs whether or not for non-medical reasons” (UNAIDS et al., 2008, p. 1).
Some advocates for FGC eradication refer to the procedure as female genital mutilation because of the extent of damage it can cause to a woman’s reproductive organs.
There four classifications of FGC that have been established by international agencies.
Classification of Types of FGC
Type I: Partial or total removal of the clitoris and/or prepuce (clitoridectomy).
Type II: Partial or total removal of the clitoris and labia minora, with or without excision of the labia majora (excision).
Type III: Narrowing of the vaginal orifice with creation of a covering seal by cutting and positioning the labia minora and/or the labia majora, with or without excision of the clitoris (infibulation).
Type IV: All other harmful procedures to the female genitalia for non-medical purposes, for example: pricking, piercing, incising, scraping, and cauterization. (UNAIDS et al., 2008.)
Many people consider FGC a violation of human rights because it is performed on girls and young women who are not yet adults and so are unable to make informed decisions for themselves. Many also see it as an act of gender-based violence because it causes lifelong harm to females (UNAIDS et al., 2008).
The practice of FGM is problematic at both individual and societal levels. As a socio-cultural practice, FGM is both a manifestation of and a contributing mechanism to the larger system of inequitable gender relations between men and women (Lewnes, 2005).
For instance, FGC responds to gender norms that say women should be sexually pure. This norm is enforced through measures that endanger girls’ and women’s health and cause needless suffering. The consequences of FGM for individual women are particularly relevant in the context of health

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Powerful Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 3349 Words
    • 9 Pages

    Female Genital Mutilation Between 120 million to 140 million women in the African continent are estimated to have undergone the inhumane tradition of Female Genital Mutilation (Martinelli & Ollé-Goig, 2012). FGM, a controversial topic is described as the partial or complete cutting of the external female genitalia. It is said to be a social ritual and tradition that is still taking place in 28 countries from Africa to Asia to the Middle East (Abdulcadir, Margairaz, Boulvain & Irion, 2011). Some…

    • 3349 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 588 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Female Genital Mutilation Female genital mutilation (FGC) is often referred to as female circumcision. The practice is common in many places around the world like parts of Africa and the Middle East. In many third world countries the practice has been part of cultural traditions for many, many years to initiate rites of passage. In extreme cases female genital mutilation is done to ensure fidelity. Efforts to stop this practice are in place around the world but are often presented with many challenges…

    • 588 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Best Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 2854 Words
    • 12 Pages

    Female Genital Mutilation: A Case of Cultural Relativism (Or Not?) Abstract Female genital mutilation (FGM) is a cultural practice that involves the cutting of external female genitalia. Issues that need to be considered regarding FGM are its health consequences, the fact that it violates basic human rights and democratic principles (of paternalism), and that the reasons why it is performed are completely unjustified. Supporters of the practice argue how it is a cultural right, and hence universal…

    • 2854 Words
    • 12 Pages
    Best Essays
  • Better Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 1341 Words
    • 6 Pages

    Female Genital Mutilation – Violating Women’s Rights and Bodies Female Genital Mutilation is often abbreviated “FGM” and is also known as Female Genital Cutting (FGC) or Female Circumcision. According to the World Health Organization, there are 4 major types of practices. The most common one is the Clitoridectomy, a partial or total removal of the clitoris. The Excision is the partial or total removal of the clitoris and the labia minora and/or the labia majora, the inner and outer lips…

    • 1341 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 839 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Female Genital Mutilation Orville L. Caval Composition I – English 1301 Professor Melinda S. Hernandez 6 February 2013 Outline Thesis: Young women around the world need to be protected from the brutal practice of female genital mutilation. I. Opposition a. Many organizations and governments are trying to persuade countries to implement social policies restricting or banning the practice. II. Support a. Some people fully support the practice as part of their culture…

    • 839 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 1630 Words
    • 7 Pages

    I strongly oppose Female genital mutilation to the fact that it violates two important human rights, namely: the right to have a surgery or not; and the right to keep one’s own gender identity. Another reason why I stand against female genital mutilation is the fact that I think that female genital mutilation is a strong gender issue leaning in favor of traditional men who want to control their many wives while they take turns to sleep with them, since female genital mutilation reduces the urge…

    • 1630 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 5697 Words
    • 19 Pages

    CASE OF FEMALE GENITAL `MUTILATION: THE TENSION BETWEEN CULTURAL RELATIVISM AND UNIVERSALISM Dianne Camille T. Corales University of the Philippines Mindanao Department of Social Sciences, BA Anthropology December 2014` 2 INTRODUCTION Over the past years, the practice of Female Genital Mutilation has received an increasing global attention and mass condemnation from the West in general along with the Feminists and Human Rights Advocates. According to the statistics of UNICEF in 2013, Female Genital…

    • 5697 Words
    • 19 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Better Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 1772 Words
    • 8 Pages

    Is Female Genital Mutilation A Moral Practice Female genital mutilation (FGM) is not a morally justified practice. It is an unnecessary procedure that has no medical health benefits to the girls and women it is being performed on. According to Utilitarianism, we should produce the greatest amount of pleasure for the greatest number affected. Utilitarian’s also believe that we should alleviate the greatest amount of pain and suffering for the greatest number affected. Based on Utilitarian grounds…

    • 1772 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Better Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 1759 Words
    • 8 Pages

    Female Genital Mutilation Female Genital Mutilation is believed to have started in Egypt 2,000 years ago and spread from there. Only a few years ago, FGM was considered a cultural tradition, but now the United Nations has labeled it as a violation of human rights. Canada, Denmark, the Netherlands, and the United States has declared Female Genital Mutilation grounds for seeking asylum and is a punishable offense (1). Many of us never heard of Female Genital Mutilation until the story of Kauziya…

    • 1759 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Best Essays

    Female Genital Mutilation

    • 4520 Words
    • 19 Pages

    eliminated from all forms of discrimination? The above imaginary situation is in fact exaggerated, though upon careful scrutiny of the Human Rights matter, even nowadays Black girls are not even protected from barbaric, evil tradition; “Female Genital Mutilation[3]” (hereinafter referred to as ‘FGM’). Bearing in mind that there are around 130 million women worldwide affected by FGM (Amnesty International est.) and recognizing hundreds and thousands of girls still going through this indescribably…

    • 4520 Words
    • 19 Pages
    Best Essays