THE BEHAVIORAL ECOLOGY OF FEMALE GENITAL CUTTING IN NORTHERN GHANA

Socioeconomic Aspects of Human Behavioral Ecology

ISBN: 978-0-76231-082-1, eISBN: 978-1-84950-255-9

ISSN: 0190-1281

Publication date: 30 December 2004

Abstract

For decades, researchers studying female genital cutting have sought to understand why the practice continues amidst abundant evidence indicating that serious health consequences can result from the more aggressive forms of cutting. Behavioral ecology theory is applied to data collected among Ghana’s Kassena-Nankana to highlight the gendered cultural forces that keep FGC practice in place through successful reproductive outcomes. With its strong association to marriageability, and thus women’s status and access to resources through marriage, circumcision has long been obligatory. However, the social transformation that is currently underway in this rural population is bringing a new perspective to the value of education, which is replacing circumcision as the resource access currency.

Citation

Reason, L. (2004), "THE BEHAVIORAL ECOLOGY OF FEMALE GENITAL CUTTING IN NORTHERN GHANA", Alvard, M. (Ed.) Socioeconomic Aspects of Human Behavioral Ecology (Research in Economic Anthropology, Vol. 23), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 175-202. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0190-1281(04)23007-4

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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