Introduction: What a Girl Needs …

  • Chris Bobel


The chapter introduces the reader to the Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) movement in the Global South as part of the wider global movement to challenge the silence, secrecy, and shame surrounding this biological process. Through two illustrative stories captured during my research, I preview the conceptual framework that interrogates how MHM frames both problems and solutions associated with girls as menstruators. I aim to show how through the eyes of MHM, risks associated with menstruation are often exaggerated, based on inadequate research and often invoking Western tropes of precarious girlhood in need of rescue. The solutions that follow, I argue, focus too narrowly on getting girls access to commercial menstrual products. These “technological fixes” accommodate the menstrual mandate by helping girls develop their “good” bodies.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chris Bobel
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality StudiesUniversity of Massachusetts BostonBostonUSA

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