Sexual Mutilations

A Human Tragedy

  • George C. Denniston
  • Marilyn Fayre Milos

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Sami A. Aldeeb Abu-Sahlieh
    Pages 41-62
  3. Didier Diers, Xavier Valla
    Pages 63-66
  4. Mervyn M. Lander
    Pages 77-83
  5. George C. Denniston
    Pages 103-109
  6. Michel Odent
    Pages 121-124
  7. Berhane Ras-Work
    Pages 137-152
  8. Pia Grassivaro Gallo, Franco Viviani, M. Livio, R. Corsaro, F. De Cordova, G. Fortunato et al.
    Pages 153-157
  9. Christa Müller
    Pages 159-162
  10. Miriam Pollack
    Pages 163-173
  11. Jenny Goodman
    Pages 175-178
  12. Jeannine Parvati Baker
    Pages 179-183
  13. Mary Conant, Betty Katz Sperlich
    Pages 185-188
  14. George Williams
    Pages 189-195
  15. Zenas Baer
    Pages 197-203
  16. J. Steven Svoboda
    Pages 205-215
  17. Back Matter
    Pages 221-237

About this book


Sexual mutilation is a global problem that affects 15. 3 million children and young adults annually. In terms of gender, 13. 3 million boys and 2 million girls are involuntarily subjected to sexual mutilation every year. While it is tempting to quantify and compare the amount of tissue removed from either gender, no ethical justification can be made for removing any amount of flesh from the body of another person. The violation of human rights implicit in sexual mutilation is identical for any gender. The violation occurs with the first cut into another person 's body. Although mutilation is a strong term, it precisely and accurately describes a condi­ tion denoting "any disfigurement or injury by removal or destruction of any conspicuous or essential part of the body. " While such terms as "circumcision" and "genital cutting" are less threatening to our sensitivities, they ultimately do a disservice by masking the fact of what is actually being done to babies and children. Although the courageous example of the survivors of sexual mutilation indicates that humans can certainly live and even re­ produce without all of their external sexualorgans, this biological phenomenon does not, however, justify subjecting a person to sexual mutilation. The remarkable resilience of the human body is a testament to the importance nature places on reproduction rather than a vindication for surgical practices that compromise this function.


Affect children gender girls human rights medicine nature production psychology reproduction resilience service state tissue

Editors and affiliations

  • George C. Denniston
    • 1
  • Marilyn Fayre Milos
    • 2
  1. 1.University of WashingtonSeattle, WashingtonUSA
  2. 2.Information Resource CentersNational Organization of CircumcisionSan AnselmoUSA

Bibliographic information