Female Genital Mutilation Analysis

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In an article by Richard Shweder titled "What about 'Female Genital Mutilation '? and Why Understanding Culture Matters in the First Place", the author explores female circumcision and its relation to culture (Shweder, pg.209). While the topic of this article is female circumcision, the author also explores the reasoning behind why it is referred to as female genital mutilation in some cultures (Shweder, pg.209). In this article, the author focuses on the thoughts that cultures who practice female circumcision have about the practice, therefore the theory used is interpretivism. (Shweder, pg.212). The author analyzes the research question "is female circumcision really mutilation?" (Shweder, pg.218). The thesis developed through this…show more content…
Shweder 's article is based on the idea that female circumcision is a practice that many cultures believe in and that their beliefs should not be discounted (Shweder, pg.213). The theory used in this article is interpretivism, this is evident because the ideas in Shweder 's article come from the beliefs of cultures that practice female circumcision (Shweder, pg.209-pg.220). The fact that interpretivism is the theory used in this article is important because it brings in the emic perspective on female circumcision (Shweder, pg.209-pg.220). A part of Shweder 's thesis directly relates to the practice of tolerance to the perspective of those who believe in the practice of female circumcision, therefore the interpretivism theory is important to the entire article (Shweder, pg.219-pg.220). The emic perspective is important to Shweder 's article as it includes the beliefs of cultures that practice female circumcision, this helps him encourage readers of his article to begin questioning statements by the Anti-FGM movement (Shweder,…show more content…
An aspect of the "mutual yuck response" portion of the article is the concept that "medical complications are the exception, not the rule" (Shweder, pg.217). Looking at the evidence is a suggestion made in Shweder 's thesis, therefore the fact that medical complications with the procedure are not as common as people assume them to be supports the thesis of this article (Shweder, pg.217). Shweder makes the point in this section that few girls who receive this procedure actually end up suffering from injury or infection (Shweder, pg.217). This again discounts statements made by the Anti-FGM movement that the procedure causes harm to those who receive it (Shweder, pg.217). The idea of a "mutual yuck response" adds to the article as a whole and supports the thesis because it shows how people view these practices in a way that discounts the meaning of them (Shweder, pg.213). The supporting points in this section support the thesis because they show how women that practice female circumcision think of it as their turn into womanhood and as something that makes them more beautiful, this relates to the aspect of the thesis that states society should look at the perspectives of those who practice female circumcision
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