Abstract for 2008 Honors Colloquium

Morgan Berman

Women's Studies

"Patriarchal Wounds?: A Transnational Feminist Critique of Globalizing Female Genital Surgeries"

One of the most widely referenced cases of "female oppression" is that of female genital cutting. Activists, legislators, and anthropologists have struggled with how to approach this topic without dominating the conversation with Euro-centric values. Transnational theories are frequently employed to maneuver around bias, simultaneously creating a "global female experience." My research has been focused on three forms of genital surgeries: FGC, intersexed infants gender assignments and elective vaginal plastic surgery. I will be critiquing the methods and findings of several authors from my own vantage point in hopes to see what these arguments have to offer us in theory and practice.