This study outlines that reconsideration has occurred: the domestic has turned out to be an international issue, ‘female circumcision’ has been renamed to ‘female genital mutilation’ (FGM), whereas a ‘traditional practice’ has turned out to be a human rights violation. Under the scrutiny of the international community, the subject of female circumcision became a capsule of several affective debates regarding international human rights, sexuality, oppression of women, racism, Western prejudice, medicalization and cultural relativism, leading into a burgeoning of discourses and literature on the subject matter. However, misapprehension, uncertainty, and disagreement over the intricate aspects of this concern have not been resolved. Certainly, the set of literature on female circumcision is to a certain extent dispersed and contrasting, falling into different disciplines such as anthropology, psychology, history, demography, social work, political science, epidemiology, public health policy, and women’s studies.
This paper discusses that one of my objectives in discussing this human phenomenon is to bridge some of these theoretical limitations through integrating contributions from different fields, ideological and geographic settings and hence emphasizing arising perspectives and associated aspects of the present debates. The tradition of female circumcision compels researchers and commonplace observers alike, inside and outside the intellectual community, to face more expansive philosophical and moral concerns. As stated by an anthropologist, “the very decision to write (or not) about the topic has become a political statement, and so is one’s choice on tone and terminology”.