Body, Migration, Re/constructive Surgeries : Making the Gendered Body in a Globalized World book cover
1st Edition

Body, Migration, Re/constructive Surgeries
Making the Gendered Body in a Globalized World

ISBN 9780815354192
Published August 14, 2018 by Routledge
310 Pages

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Book Description

Bringing together an international range of case studies and interviews with individuals who have had genital re/construction, Body, Migration, Re/constructive Surgeries explores the socio-cultural meanings of clitoral re/construction following female genital cutting (FGC), hymen reconstruction, trans and intersex bodily interventions; and cosmetic surgery. Drawing critical attention to how decisions around such surgeries are affected by social, economic and regulatory contexts that change over time and across spaces, it raises questions such as:

  • How are bodies genderized through surgical interventions?
  • How do such interventions express cultural context?
  • How do women who have experienced female genital cutting respond to opportunities for clitoral reconstruction?
  • How do female-to-male (FtM) trans people decide on how and where to undertake body modifications?
  • What roles do cultural expectations and official regulations play in how people decide to have their bodies modified?

Suggesting that conventional gender binaries are no longer adequate to understanding the quest for bodily interventions, this insightful volume seeks to give a greater voice to those engaged in gender body modification. It will appeal to students and postdoctoral researchers interested in fields such as Gender Studies, Social Studies, Sexuality Studies and Cultural Studies.

Table of Contents


Gabriele Griffin and Malin Jordal

Part 1: Understanding female genital cutting and genital reconstructive surgery

1. Psychosexual health after female genital mutilation/cutting and clitoral reconstruction: what does the evidence say?

Jasmine Abdulcadir

2. An analytic review of the literature on female genital circumcision/mutilation/cutting (FGC): the Möbius strip of body and society for women with FGC

Gillian Einstein, Danielle Jacobson and Ju Eun Justina Lee

3. Multidisciplinary care for women affected by female genital mutilation/cutting: findings from Belgium

Els Leye

4. Resistance to reconstruction: the cultural weight of virginity, virility and male sexual pleasure

R. Elise B. Johansen

Part 2: Routes to reconstruction: desiring surgery

5. The meaning of clitoral reconstruction (CR) and female genital cutting among immigrant women asking for CR surgery in Sweden

Malin Jordal

6. The need for clitoral reconstruction: engaged bodies and committed medicine

Michela Villani

7. Circumcising the mind, reconstructing the body: contextualizing genital reconstructive surgery in Burkina Faso

Margaret Nyarango and Gabriele Griffin

8. ‘If you can afford it, you can do it’: deliberations of people in Burkina Faso on clitoral reconstruction after female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C)

Elena Jirovsky

Part 3: (Re)constructive surgery: dilemmas and negotiations

9. Hymen reconstruction surgery in Jordan: sexual politics and the economy of virginity

Ebtihal Mahadeen

10. Hymen reconstruction as pragmatic empowerment? Results of a qualitative study from Tunisia

Verina Wild, Hinda Poulin, Christopher W. McDougall, Andrea Stöckl and Nikola Biller-Andorno

11. Vagina dialogues: theorizing the ‘designer vagina’

Ruth Holliday

12. Routes to gender-affirming surgery: navigation and negotiation in times of biomedicalization 

Iwo Nord

13. What constitutes an in/significant organ? The vicissitudes of juridical and medical decision-making regarding genital surgery for intersex and trans people in Sweden

Erika Alm

Part 4: Thinking otherwise: affect, ethics and different futures

14. Facing uneasiness in feminist research: the case of female genital cutting

Kathy Davis

15. Beyond comparision: 'African' female genital cutting and 'western' body modifications

Carolyn Pedwell

16. Before the cut: rethinking genital identity

Margrit Shildrick and Marie-Louise Holm

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Gabriele Griffin is Professor of Gender Research at Uppsala University, Sweden.

Malin Jordal is a Researcher at Centre for Gender Research, Uppsala University, Sweden.