Professor Afshan Jafar published in The New York Times
The New York Times has published an op-ed by Associate Professor of Sociology Afshan Jafar titled “The Thin Line Between Surgery and Mutilation.”
In the piece, Jafar, who specializes in globalization, transnational women's movements, fundamentalist and nationalist movements, gender, media, and the body, writes about why we as a society view differently the overlap between surgery on intersex infants and female genital mutilation.
Jafar writes that “Female genital mutilation is labeled ‘abuse,’ a ‘brutal’ or ‘barbaric’ practice. Intersex surgery, on the other hand, is often referred to as ‘corrective’ or ‘normalizing’ surgery.”
Jafar points out that she’s not defending the practice of female genital mutilation, often done out of cultural norms and fear of ostracism. “We should not accept harmful practices and rituals, or think that the practice isn’t fair game for criticism and legislation.” Instead, she’s shedding light on what shapes our ideas about what is unacceptable by comparing the practice to intersex surgeries.
To read more, visit www.nytimes.com/2019/05/02/opinion/fgm-ruling-intersex-surgery.html.