Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Cutting a thorn: The cleansing function of female genital cutting
by Garcia, Danielle M., M.A., California State University, Long Beach, 2010, 116; 1490286
Abstract (Summary)

This research critically analyzes the practice of Female Genital Cutting (FGC) among circumcising groups in Africa and discovers the rite can be classified as a cleansing ritual. Historically FGC is understood as a cultural tradition. Little emphasis has been placed upon uncovering the deeper function of the ritual or on understanding beliefs of members of circumcising cultures.

In this work I draw parallels between commonly accepted cleansing rituals and FGC, uncover the ritual nature of FGC, and find a shared belief among women of circumcising groups that FGC results in improved cleanliness. The exploration of this subject urges the asking of broader questions regarding body modification. Specifically, the research that follows calls much needed attention to the possibility that religious values and beliefs can be manifested on the human form.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Stewart, David Tabb
School: California State University, Long Beach
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 49/04M, Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Comparative
Publication Number: 1490286
ISBN: 9781124546339
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