North Africa

Just like couscous : Gender, agency and the politics of female circumcision in Cairo

Upphovsperson: Malmström, Maria Frederika
Utgivare: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet | Göteborg : University of Gothenburg
År: 2009
Ämnesord: anthropology, identity, gender, agency, embodiment, senses, body, sexuality, female circumcision, politics, Social change, performativity, practice, Political islam, Egypt, Middle East, North Africa
This dissertation explores how female gender identity is continually created and re-created in Egypt through a number of daily practices, of which female circumcision is central. In order to do so, the study inquires into the lived experiences and social meanings of female circumcision and femininity as narrated by women from lower class neighbourhoods in Cairo. The study seeks to understand how the experiences of femininity and female circumcision are shaped and challenged by the social and political changes that impinge on these women’s lives. Female circumcision has become a global political minefield with ‘Western’ interventions affecting Egyptian politics and social development, not least in the area of democracy and human rights. The global human rights discourse brings about change by portraying female circumcision as mutilation. These discourses and other political and social changes both in Egypt and elsewhere, such as modernization, the aftermath of 9/11 and regional instability have together begun to dis-embed female circumcision from its socio-cultural context. This thesis focuses upon the way in which these women understand and respond to these complex changes and it looks particularly at how different actors, in their construction of female identity, contest, resist, subvert or embrace female circumcision. The study explores how the subject is made through the interplay of global hegemonic structures of power and the most intimate sphere, which has been exposed in the international arena. The need to understand agency as the capacity to act according to the exigencies of the specific sociocultural forms the main premise of this dissertation; the Egyptian context comprises the complex interaction between the local and a variety of wider global forces.

Cooperatives revisited

Medarbetare: Hedlund, Hans
Utgivare: Uppsala : Nordiska Afrikainstitutet
År: 1988
Ämnesord: Egypt, North Africa, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Tanzania, East Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Southern Africa, Cooperatives, Rural cooperatives, Production cooperatives, Conference papers, SOCIAL SCIENCES, SAMHÄLLSVETENSKAP
Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Tanzania, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe provide examples in this book of the problems and progress of the cooperative movement in Africa. The studies presented here were the major contributions to a seminar for African and European scholars specializing in examining the development of cooperatives. Certain themes reoccur: the relationships between the cooperatives and the state, the influence of the national economy on the local cooperatives, the pros and cons of the producer cooperatives. The tone is now very much against direct state control. Other themes are new: the role of women in cooperatives, a cautious view of external assistance to central bodies, and the need for self-help groups.