Case Study : A Question Of Compromise Essay

Case Study : A Question Of Compromise Essay

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Case Study: “A Question of Compromise”

This is a case study regarding a family in Senegal that follows the Muslim culture. However, unlike most Muslims, they practice the form of female circumcision. The tradition is to have all girls coming of age to be circumcised; otherwise they would be shunned and would never be able to get a husband. The family’s tradition believes that if a girl does not have this procedure done, they will be considered deformed and their clitoris will hang down to their knees. Awa is concerned because she and her husband, Joseph, have two daughters who are coming of age and her mother-in-law is demanding to know why they have not made the arrangements for the girls’ circumcision. Awa’s dilemma is whether or not she should carry on this tradition with her girls; suggest possibly a simpler procedure of just removing the small skin over the clitoris or to not have either of the procedures done.

When Awa was a girl, her mother and father, after a lot of arguing, agreed that she would not go through the traditional procedure that most girls go through. Awa’s father took her to a doctor, where anesthesia was used so there was no pain and only the small skin over the clitoris was removed. She is living a normal life, with sexual desires and able to give birth to children. Unfortunately, her husband is being pressured at work and being threatened to lose his job if the procedures are not being done their girls.

Joseph feels that if they talk to people they know to discuss the process of the smaller procedure and they all agree to this procedure with their own daughters, this would be considered acceptable. He would be able to keep his job, his mother would not harass Awa and they would be able to say...

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...en, if this tradition is what she has grown to know, who am I to say it is wrong? There are so many cultures that are tied with religion, which makes it so much more important to that culture.

Knowing the repercussions that can take place by a girl being circumcised is all the more reason as to why these practices should be abandon. At a young age, girls are so vulnerable and something like this could be so traumatic for them. It is hard for me to believe that this is a religious practice. I feel that if it were, this would be a practice across all religions. From the two responses, I am seeing that this is not the case. Neither response has convinced me that this is a practice that should be carried on today in any country or any culture.

Where did this tradition come from? What evidence did they have that supported that this was a religious practice?

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