The society in question is Ghana and the division of sexual rights and laws according to the interpretations of Michel Foucault and Angela Y. Davis. The cultural dichotomy in Ghana whereby young women are at the hands of the older women within their society and the constraints placed by them through the practice of female genital mutilation. Culturally, it has been a normative for women to be circumcised and it has been associated with either Islam or the patriarchal dimensions in which Ghana has been placed and that the rite itself is ancient. However, several discourses will point out that it is neither an issued statement of Islam or within the ‘actual’ hands of patriarchy. The practice of female circumcision involves either the partial or complete removal of the external genitalia for non-medical reasons. The practice is thought to have originated from the Africans of the sub-saharan desert and therefore and African phenomenon that spread to the Arab world and became associated with Islamic practices . In 1994, Ghana was the first country to pass the law explicitly prohibiting female circumcision. The act of circumcision, it must be noted, ‘obliterates’ the feeling of orgasm in the part of the woman, the practice is ‘said’ to control debauchery in women. The act of circumcision previously being a cultural phenomenon in Africa is propelled center stage as the world began to assemble itself into the reins of globalization and involvement with the United Nations. What was the norm became an ethnocentric bias, but how far and to what extent? ...
Foucault (1984) comes in, when he expresses the connection between power and
knowledge, the power is definitely held in the dominated sphere of feminists and world
activists beckoning the Ghanaian government under their call but what is missing is that
they are expressing ethnocentric views on Ghanaian women as being 'helpless' under a
regime so 'patriarchal' and sexist. The passage of initiation for Ghanaian women is to go
through the rite of genital circumcision, it has been a part of their life and their reality.
Schweder3(2000) explained this when he remarked on one of the more open
anthropologists Fuambai Ahmadu (2000), who have also gone through such initiation
rites herself, that because she had the opportunity of education she is able to empower
and acknowledge to others who think that women who have been genitally altered to be
incapable of knowledge and thus lower than them the dominated groups.
However, political complaints lauded at dominant groups especially the government of
Ghana has identified female circumcision as a violation of human rights and at the core
of gender violence. Under pressure, the government has passed on laws such as
mentioned above in an effort to curb female circumcision, since circumcision rites are
done within the home and among relatives and family it rarely becomes a matter of legal
interest unless the method of circumcision has brought any health issue or complaint in
part of the circumcised, and although the government acknowledges the political
pressures controlling their culture and tradition such practices still continue to be done
behind closed doors. We can see that this is a form of negotiation between the dominant
group and the subordinate knowing that although such conventions
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The society in question is Ghana and the division of sexual rights and laws according to the interpretations of Michel Foucault and Angela Y.Davis.The cultural dichotomy in Ghana whereby young women are at the hands of the older women within their society and the constraints placed by them through the practice of female genital mutilation. …
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