While Female Genital Cutting (FGM/C) is a deeply entrenched cultural practice, there is now mounting evidence for a gradual decline in prevalence in a number of geographical areas in Africa and following migration to non-practicing countries. Consequently, there is now a growing number of women with FGM/C who are raising ‘uncut’ daughters. This study used a qualitative methodology to investigate the experience of women with FGM/C raising daughters who have not been subjected to the ritual. The aim of this study was to shed light on mothers’ perception of the meaning and cultural significance of the practice and to gain insight into their mothering experience of ‘uncut’ girls.
To this end, in-depth interviews were conducted with fifteen mothers living in Abidjan, Ivory Coast and in Montreal, Canada (8 and 7, respectively).
Thirteen mothers intrinsically refused to perpetuate FGM/C onto their daughters and two diasporic mothers were in favour of FGM/C but forewent the practice for fear of legal repercussions. Whether the eschewing of FGM/C was deliberate or legally imposed, raising ‘uncut’ daughters had significant consequences in terms of women’s mothering experiences. Mothers faced specific challenges pertaining to community and family pressure to have daughters undergo FGM/C, and expressed concerns regarding their daughters’ sexuality. Conversely, women’s narratives were also infused with pride and hope for their daughters, and revealed an accrued dialogue between the mother-daughter dyad about cultural norms and sexuality. Interestingly, women’s mothering experience was also bolstered by the existence of informal networks of support between mothers with FGM/C whose daughters were ‘uncut’. These communities of mothers engaged in open dialogue about the consequences of FGM/C and offered reciprocal solidarity and support in their decision to forego FGM/C for their children.
Women with FGM/C who are raising ‘uncut’ daughters in their homeland and in their country of immigration vastly report a positive experience. However, they also face specific challenges related to immigration, psychosocial, and psychosexual considerations, which must be tackled from a multidisciplinary perspective.
WHO Eliminating female genital mutilation: an interagency statement UNAIDS, UNDP, UNECA, UNESCO, UNFPA, UNHCHR, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNIFEM, WHO. 2008. http://www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/csw/csw52/statements_missions/Interagency_Statement_on_Eliminating_FGM.pdf. Accessed 2 Mar 2017.
UNICEF. Female genital mutilation/cutting: a global concern [press release]. 2016. https://www.unicef.org/media/media_90033.html. Accessed 2 Mar 2017.
UNICEF. Female genital mutilation/cutting: what might the future hold? 2014. https://www.unicef.org/media/files/FGM-C_Report_7_15_Final_LR.pdf. Accessed 2 Mar 2017.
WHO. Female genital mutilation: Report of a WHO technical working group. Geneva, 17–19 July 1995. Geneva World Health Organization; 1996. http://www.who.int/iris/handle/10665/63602. Accessed 30 Dec 2016
WHO, Sexual and Reproductive Health. Classification of female genital mutilation. 2017. http://www.who.int/reproductivehealth/topics/fgm/overview/en/. Accessed 4 Mar 2017.
Berg RC, Underland V, Odgaard-Jensen J, Fretheim A, Vist GE. Effects of female genital cutting on physical health outcomes: a systematic review and meta-analysis. [Meta-Analysis Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov’t Review]. BMJ Open. 2014. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2014-006316.
Berg RC, Denison E. Does female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) affect women’s sexual functioning? A systematic review of the sexual consequences of FGM/C. Sex Res Soc Pol. 2012;9:41–56. CrossRef
Berg RC, Underland V. Gynecological consequences of female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C). Oslo: Norwegian Knowledge Center for the Health Services (NOKC); 2014. Report No: 11.
Bogale D, Markos D, Kaso M. Prevalence of female genital mutilation and its effect on women’s health in Bale zone, Ethiopia: a cross-sectional study. [Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov’t]. BMC Public Health. 2014. doi: 10.1186/1471-2458-14-1076.
Khaja, K. ‘Female Circumcision: Life Histories of Somali Women’, Dissertation Abstracts International. 2004;65(2):584–794.
Omolase C, Akinsanya O, Faturoti S, Omolase B. Attitudes towards female genital cutting among pregnant women in Owo, Nigeria. S Afr Fam Pract. 2012;54:363–3. CrossRef
UNICEF. At least 200 million girls and women alive today living in 30 countries have undergone FGM/C. 2017. https://data.unicef.org/topic/child-protection/female-genital-mutilation-and-cutting/##. Accessed March 2017.
UNICEF. Female genital mutilation/cutting country profiles. 2016. https://data.unicef.org/resources/female-genital-mutilation-cutting-country-profiles/. Accessed 7 Mar 2017.
UNICEF. Female genital mutilation/cutting: a statistical overview and exploration of the dynamics of change. 2013. https://data.unicef.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/FGMC_Lo_res_Final_26.pdf. Accessed March 7 2017.
UNICEF. Female genital mutilation/cutting: statistical exploration. 2005. https://www.unicef.org/gender/files/FGM-C_Statisitics.pdf. Accessed 7 Mar 2017.
Berer M. The history and role of the criminal law in anti-FGM campaigns: is the criminal law what is needed, at least in countries like Great Britain? Reprod Health Matters Comment. 2015. doi: 10.1016/j.rhm.2015.10.001.
Leye E, Sabbe A. Overview of legislation in the European Union to address female genital mutilaiton: challenges and recommendations for the implementation of laws. Expert paper presented at an Expert Group Meeting on good practices in legislation to address harmful practices against women. United Nations Conference Centre; Addis Ababa. 2009
European Institute for Gender Equality. Report: Female genital mutilation in the European Union and Croatia. 2014. http://eige.europa.eu/sites/default/files/documents/eige-report-fgm-in-the-eu-and-croatia.pdf. doi: 10.2839/23199, Accessed March 6 2017.
Gele AA, Kumar B, Hjelde KH, Sundby J. Attitudes toward female circumcision among Somali immigrants in Oslo: a qualitative study. Int J Women’s Health. 2012. doi: 10.2147/IJWH.S27577.
Gele AA, Sagbakken M, Kumar B. Is female circumcision evolving or dissolving in Norway? A qualitative study on attitudes toward the practice among young Somalis in the Oslo area. Int J Women’s Health. 2015;7:993–43.
Johnsdotter S, Moussa K, Carlbom A, Aregai R, Essen B. Never my daughters’: a qualitative study regarding attitude change toward female genital cutting among Ethiopian and Eritrean families in Sweden. [Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov’t]. Health Care Women Int. 2009. doi: 10.1080/07399330802523741. PubMed
Koukoui SD. FGC in Canada: seeking a more fruitful approach. Canadian Medical Association Journal, published online, March 5, 2015. 2015. http://www.cmaj.ca/content/early/2015/02/17/cmaj.141215.citation/reply#cmaj_el_727970. Accessed Dec 30 2016.
Morison L, Dirir A, Elmi S, Warsame J, Dirir S. How experiences and attitudes relating to female circumcision vary according to age on arrival in Britain: a study among young Somalis in London. [Comparative Study Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov’t]. Ethn Health. 2004;9(1):75–100. doi: 10.1080/1355785042000202763. CrossRefPubMed
Belmaker RH. Successful cultural change: the example of female circumcision among Israeli Bedouins and Israeli Jews from Ethiopia. Isr J Psychiatry Relat Sci. 2012;49(3):178–83. PubMed
Morrow SL. Quality and trustworthiness in qualitative research in counseling psychology. J Couns Psychol. 2005;52(2):250–60. CrossRef
L’Ecuyer R. L’analyse de contenu: notion et étapes, dans Les méthodes de la recherche qualitative. In: Deslauriers JP, editor. Les méthodes de la recherche qualitative. Presses de l’Université du Québec; 1987. p. 49–64.
Oljira T, Assefa N, Dessie Y. Female genital mutilation among mothers and daughters in Harar, eastern Ethiopia. Int J Gynecol Obstet. 2016;135:304–9. CrossRef
Triandis H. The self and social behavior in different cultural contexts. Psychol Rev. 1989;96(3):506–20. CrossRef
Wiredu K, Gyekye K. Person and Community: Ghanaian Philosophical Studies. Washington DC: Council for Research in Values and Philosophy; 1992.
Wangila M. Western religions and female sexuality: engaging dualistic thinking in attitudes to African women’s sexuality. In: Amponsah TFNA, editor. Women, gender, and sexualities in Africa. Durham: Carolina Academic Press; 2012. p. 104.
Khazan O. Why some women choose to get circumcised. The Atlantic. 2015. https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2015/04/female-genital-mutilation-cutting-anthropologist/389640/. Accessed 6 Mar 2017.
Oladele BA. Yoruba understanding of authentic motherhood. In: Fwatshak TFSU, editor. Beyond tradition: African women and cultural spaces. Trenton: Africa World Press; 2011. p. 17–28.
Ahmadu F. Rites and wrongs: an insider/outsider reflects on power and excision. In: Shell-Duncan B, Hernlund Y, editors. Female “circumcision” in Africa: culture, controversy, and change. Boulder: Lynne Rienner Publishers; 2000. p. 283–312.
Sudarkasa N. Reflections on motherhood in nuclear and extended families in Africa and in the united states. In: Aborampah O-M, Sudarkasa N, editors. Extended families in Africa and the African Diaspora. Trenton: Africa World Press; 2011. p. 45–70.
Tummala-Narra P, Claudius M. Immigrant mothers. In: Akhtar S, editor. The New motherhoods: patterns of early child care in contemporary culture. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield; 2016. p. 127–43.
Hernlund Y, Shell-Duncan B. Transcultural positions: negociating rights and culture. In: Shell-Duncan YHB, editor. Transcultural bodies: female genital cutting in global context. New Jersey: Rutgers University Press; 2007. p. 1–45.
- The mothering experience of women with FGM/C raising ‘uncut’ daughters, in Ivory Coast and in Canada
- BioMed Central
Neu im Fachgebiet Gynäkologie und Geburtshilfe
Meistgelesene Bücher aus dem Fachgebiet
Mail Icon II