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  The Ishmael Community: Questions and Answers

The Question (ID Number 654)...

    In one of the lectures in The Story of B, I think it may be the first of Shirin's, you brought up the point about female circumcision in Islamicised tribal cultures. I remember the question from the audience jolting me when I first read it, and B's reaction to it more so ('abominable practice' seemed somewhat out of character), and was wondering if there was a particular reason for this, why it wasn't left until after the lecture, or if you were prompted to put it in somehow.

    ...and the response:

    I'm not sure why you think that calling female circumcision an "abominable practice" is out of character; obviously I don't agree; it IS an abominable practice, and Shirin would certainly agree. It WAS "left until after the lecture"--it was a question in the Q&A session that followed the lecture. I did indeed want "to put it in somehow" because, in her Warrior Marks: Female Genital Mutilation and the Sexual Blinding of Women, Alice Walker failed to make the point that this practice is not found in African tribes in general but only in those tribes that have been "Islamicised."


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