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     INFORMATIVE VIDEOS: 
    
Facing Circumcision  Eight Physicians Tell Their Stories
     Restoration in Focus  
Instructional Video for Foreskin Restoration
     They Cut Babies, Don't They?  
One Man's Struggle Against Circumcision
     Whose Body, Whose Rights?   Award-winning documentary seen on PBS!

THE BOOK THAT EXPOSES IT ALL: 
    
Circumcision Exposed
Rethinking a Medical and
Cultural Tradition

FORESKIN RESTORATION with:
The P.U.D.  new low pricing!
and The VacuTrac at special pricing!
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How is (Fe)Male Circumcision Trivialized?

(Both in the same manner, of course!)


NOTE: Links with a right-facing blue arrow will take you off this site.

 

   "Circumcision is cleanliness if used moderately and is useful to women as well as men."

[Mohammed Tantawi, leading Islamic religious scholar, quoted in the Arabic newspaper Asharq Al-Aswat, reported by Miriam Sami, Associated Press Writer in "Cleric Eases Stand on Female Circumcision, Alarming Activists," April 9, 1996]

 

   "There are problems of such tremendous magnitude in our society and in our lives, that it (female circumcision) is not a primary problem to us."

[28 year old Sudanese maternity hospital resident, interview p. 155, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   "Our mothers, aunts and sisters have been doing this for years and no one was complaining."

[Dr. Munir Fawzi, Gynecologist at Cairo’s Ain Shams University, Dallas Morning News, 12/25/96]

 

    Many here dispute claims that there is any health risk associated with the age-old operation..."Circumcision has no negative effects as (the government) claims and today, with the progress of medicine, the operation can be done without any danger."

[Khaled al-Sharif, Abnob tribe member, quoted in news report, "Egyptian fundamentalists ignoring female circumcision ban," 6 January 1998, Agence France-Presse]

 

    The ruling bans circumcision unless deemed necessary for a  female's health - swelling of the labia or clitoris, for instance. "I'm a university professor and I can decide whether a patient needs to be reduced or not. I will do it for medical reasons," he said with a smile.

[Dr.Munir Fawzi, gynecologist, in news report, "Egypt court bans female mutilation," 7 February 1998, Associated Press]

 

    "God forbid!" Sakina Ibrahim, a 60-year-old village exclaimed in disbelief when she heard of the ban. "This ruling won't work here, it won't be obeyed," she said.   ..."It's an evil ruling," interjected Abdel-Maguid Hagar, 36. "It will continue in secret," declared Hamam Mahmoud Ali, 26.

[Egyptian citizens, quoted in news report, "Egypt court bans female mutilation," 7 February 1998, Associated Press]

 

    "How can we leave our daughters uncircumcised? The government can do what it wants and we, too, will do what we want. We will all circumcise our daughters, no matter what the punishments."

[Osman Antar, mayor of Sabee (Egypt), quoted in news report, "Egyptian fundamentalists ignoring female circumcision ban," 6 January 1998, Agence France-Presse]

 

   "I do see a few cases (of emotional disturbance from circumcision), but when you compare their number to that of the number of women that are circumcised, they are very trivial indeed."

[Dr. Yahia Oun Alla, Sudanese psychiatrist, interview, p. 137, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   She says that she thinks pharaonic circumcision is a good practice, and feels she has lost nothing by her own circumcision.

[From "Interviews with Women" History #5, p. 253, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   She claims there was no pain whatsoever (when she was circumcised without anesthetic at age 6). She says she has had "no problems at all" because of her circumcision, and is very happy about it. She feels that circumcision is a good practice.

[50-year-old Sudanese village housewife. From "Interviews with Women" History #1, p. 247, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   According to a government study earlier this year, 97 percent of 14,779 Egyptian women polled had been circumcised…Eighty percent of those circumcised said they were pleased with the results.

[Excerpt from news report "Egyptian Court Allows Female Circumcision," Toronto Globe & Mail, June 25, 1997]

 

   To defend themselves from feelings of inferiority, many women deny that FGM damages their bodies or their sexuality.

[Excerpt from booklet "FGM: A Call for Global Action," p. 37, published by RAINBO, 1995]

 

   "Until recently, it never occurred to me that there was anything strange about women’s circumcision."

[Ahmed, 32-year-old Sudanese veterinarian, interview, p.124, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   "They (parents) do not want her to suffer the stigma of being different from other girls. She…comes to accept that what has been done is in her best interest."

[Dr. Hassabo, 40-year-old male psychiatrist, interview, p. 143, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   "We are brought up to believe that all sorts of evil things will happen to us if we are not circumcised."

[Eclas, 43-year-old Sudanese biology professor, interview, p. 116, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   "Both Islam and medicine agree on its benefits. Uncircumcised girls…are more liable to infections and cancers."

[Dr. Saed Thabet, professor gynecology at Cairo’s Kasr El Aini Teaching Hospital, quoted in "Female Circumcision is Curbed in Egypt," British Medical Journal, August 3, 1996]

 

   "It's our religion. We pray, we do fasting, we do circumcision. For 14 centuries of Islam, our mothers and grandmothers have performed this operation. Those who are not circumcised get AIDS easily."

[Sheik Yusef Badry, in news report "Egyptian Court Allows Female Circumcision," Toronto Globe & Mail, June 25, 1997]

 

   "I did not know anything about the operation at the time, except that it was very simple, and that it was done to all the girls for purposes of cleanliness…"

[Research worker, interview, p.165, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   She was one of the first girls to be circumcised in her village, which until then had not practiced circumcision at all. Her mother told her that this was "the new way," and that it would keep her clean and free from disease.

[From "Interviews with Women" History #4, p. 250, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   "To the girls here (Sudan) circumcision does not mean taking away part of their bodies. It is a normal occurrence that happens to everyone."

[Dr. Yahia Oun Alla, Sudanese psychiatrist, interview, p. 139, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   Question: "Do you ever feel angry when you…realize how you have been deprived?" Answer: "No, because that is the culture here. They do it to everybody." Question: "Do you know other women who feel the way you do?" Answer: "No…they feel they have to follow custom. Even educated people still do it as before."

[Fahtma, U.S.-educated Sudanese mother of four children, interview, p. 134, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   She plans to take only half the clitoris (from her daughter). She must have some sort of circumcision, she says, or people will look down on her.

[32-year-old Sudanese practical nurse with 9 years of education in the capital. From "Interviews with Women" History #6, p. 254, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   "It is done at such a young age and in no time at all they are well again and go back to playing their games. It doesn’t really sink in, what has been done, and the problems later when you are a woman, seem to have no connection to it."

[Eclas, 43-year-old Sudanese biology professor, interview, p. 118, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   "With the older women there is often the element of: ‘If it was done to me, why should it not be done to the young girls?’"

[Dr. Saida, Sudanese physician, interview, p.127, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   "One (doctor) said that he talked to every woman who came to him for this purpose (circumcision of their daughter), explaining the consequences and saying that it was unnecessary, but found they insisted upon having it done, so he complies. His justification was that he did it in a hygienic way and lost nothing by it, on the contrary, he gained money. But he overlooked the fact that he is acting unethically…instead of being a model of enlightenment for others; one can only assume that he is simply pursuing his own interests. The negative effect of this is that when we try to convince women that this operation is not necessary, they immediately reply that doctors do it, therefore it must be a good thing."

[Dr. Asma El Dareer, Sudanese physician, interview, p. 99, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   She accepts it as everyone else accepts it. "Most African women have still not developed the sensitivity to feel deprived or to see in many cultural practices a violation of their human rights."

[O. Koso-Thomas, quoted, p. 75, Prisoners of Ritual: Odyssey into Female Genital Circumcision in Africa, Hanny Lightfoot-Klein, 1989]

 

   Tens of thousands of women marched in the (Sierra Leone) capital Freetown and various other towns early this year protesting foreign and domestic campaigns against the practice (of female circumcision).

[Excerpt from news report "Sierra Leone Army Chief Backs Female Circumcision," Tribune News, July 2, 1997]

See also:
    Male Genital Mutilation (Circumcision): A Feminist Study of a Muted Gender Issue
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The Effect of Male Circumcision on the Sexual Enjoyment of the Female Partner  newyellow.gif (902 bytes)

More Pages Related to Male & Female Circumcision

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