This study sought to understand the role that health providers play in the medicalization of female genital cutting (FGC) among the Abagusii community in western Kenya, among whom the practice continues to be almost universal. Interviews with service providers and their clients revealed an overwhelming belief that FGC fulfills a traditional cultural obligation among the Abagusii, and that it limits a woman’s sexual desire and confers respect on girls. New approaches are needed within this community to present FGC as violating human rights and national laws, as well as threatening girls’ and women’s health. The study recommends measures such as the active participation of health staff in advocating against the practice, public education, and community-wide approaches to changing values and attitudes towards FGC.
Njue, Carolyne and Ian Askew. 2004. "Medicalization of female genital cutting among the Abagusii in Nyanza Province, Kenya," FRONTIERS Final Report. Washington, DC: Population Council.
A Research Agenda to End Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) in a Generation; Frontiers in Reproductive Health
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