Genital Mutilation

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        Would you consider circumcision mutilation?  No?  How about infibulation?  Clitoredectomy?  Subcision? While most of us have definite ideas as to what we would consider mutilation very few people would consider circumcision to fall under this category.


The Arguments Against Circumcision:

           "Where is my foreskin? The case against circumcision" by Paul M. Fleiss. MD. Mothering magazine, Winter 1997 

"Routine circumcision of babies in the United States did not begin until the Cold War era. Circumcision is almost unheard of in Europe, Southern America, and non-Muslim Asia. In fact, only 10 to 15 percent of men throughout the world are circumcised."
"The natural penis requires no special care. A child's foreskin, like his eyelids, is self-cleansing. Forcibly retracting a baby's foreskin can lead to irritation and infection. The best way to care for a child's intact penis is to leave it alone." The Case Against Circumcision by Paul M. Fleiss, MD  A great article damning the practice.  Refer to this link to check the references given in the article presented above.  Gives an extensive list of sites concerning circumcision with commentary.  Most of the sites appear to be sympathetic to the practice. The home page of this pro-circumcision site.  A good treatment of penile anatomy and the consequences of circumcision.  Animation illustrating the function of the prepuce.  38 reasons to not circumcise  17 functions of the foreskin  This presents responses to various arguments for circumcision.



RituaL mutilation. Subincision of the penis among Australian Aborigines.
Am J Forensic Med Pathol. 1983 Sep;4(3):227-9.
Pounder DJ.

Subincision of the penis is a traditional ritual mutilation unique to the Aborigines, the indigenous people of Australia. The mutilation is a urethrotomy in which the undersurface of the penis is incised and the urethra slit open lengthwise. Subincision is one element in the initiation of Aboriginal youths. In later ceremonies, repeated throughout adult life, the subincised penis is used as a site for ritual bloodletting. There also exists a ritual of penis holding which occurs when a subincised man enters a strange camp. The origin of subincision and the reason for its localization to the Australian continent has not been satisfactorily explained. The mutilation is still performed among tribal Aborigines, and identifies a man as holding a position of status within the tribe.  Description of Australian circumcision and subincision.



   With good cause people condemn the barbaric practice of female mutilation.  Why is little heard about male genital mutilation?

"What is Female Genital Mutilation?
The different types of mutilation
Female genital mutilation (FGM) is the term used to refer to the removal of part, or all, of the female genitalia. The most severe form is infibulation, also known as pharaonic circumcision. An estimated 15% of all mutilations in Africa are infibulations. The procedure consists of clitoridectomy (where all, or part of, the clitoris is removed), excision (removal of all, or part of, the labia minora), and cutting of the labia majora to create raw surfaces, which are then stitched or held together in order to form a cover over the vagina when they heal. A small hole is left to allow urine and menstrual blood to escape. In some less conventional forms of infibulation, less tissue is removed and a larger opening is left.

The vast majority (85%) of genital mutilations performed in Africa consist of clitoridectomy or excision. The least radical procedure consists of the removal of the clitoral hood.

In some traditions a ceremony is held, but no mutilation of the genitals occurs. The ritual may include holding a knife next to the genitals, pricking the clitoris, cutting some pubic hair, or light scarification in the genital or upper thigh area. "

Read the rest of this article which presents the harmful physical effects of this horrible anachronism of the past.


Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is practiced in many forms:

bulletSunna circumcision in which the tip of the clitoris and/or its covering (prepuce) are removed.
bulletClitoridectomy where the entire clitoris, the prepuce and adjacent labia are removed.
bulletInfibulation (a.k.a. Pharaonic circumcision) which is a clitoridectomy followed by sewing up of the vulva. A small opening is left to allow urine and menstrual blood to pass. 1 A second operation is done later in life to reverse some of the damage. In some cultures, the woman is cut open by her husband on their wedding night with a double edged dagger. She may be sewn up again if her husband leaves on a long trip.
bulletRead the rest of the article including the Islamic views on the subject.