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Patriarchy: Perpetuating the Practice of Female Genital Mutilation

Keywords: Genital Mutilation , Patriarchy , Feminism

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Abstract:

Female genital mutilation is a common practice in certainregions of Africa and Asia. This often times performed by women onother women and young girls. Men are far removed from the actitself. Proponents argue that it decreases the rate ofHIV/AIDS. Therefore it is beneficial to the larger society. However,female genital mutilation, much the same as foot-binding and breastironing and corsetry are part of a continuum of female body andsexuality control. These practices like female genital mutilation arecarried out by women for the benefit of men. This paper attempts to show that these practices are not isolated occurrances or cultural phenomons but rather the invisible hand of patriarchy. The privileging of male that accompanies patriarchial systems make female genital mutilation a requirement for women’s survival not a chose.

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