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Hilary Burrage's website comprises mostly her sociological papers and articles about patriarchy, (gendered) harmful practices and, specifically, female genital mutilation / FGM.

To select particular topics in any area please go to the Word Cloud below on your right.
(Or just scroll down here for recent posts....)

Hilary is the author of two books on her chosen themes:

15.07.14 FGM Book1 jacket jpegEradicating Female Genital Mutilation: A UK Perspective (Ashgate/Routledge, 2015) is a book about pathways to eradicating FGM in the UK and around the world, and a detailed handbook-textbook which covers global and historic/political issues from a socio-economic as well as educational, legal and medical aspects.
There is an accompanying website for updates and a Twitter account [book available from the publisher; or from Amazon.co.uk / Amazon.com (inc. e-format) and high street booksellers].

16.01.22 Female Mutilation book pic (3)Female Mutilation: The truth behind the horrifying global practice of female genital mutilation (New Holland Publishers, 2016) comprises 70+ ‘narratives’ from survivors, family and community members, activists and professionals in two dozen countries, five continents, also with an accompanying website to bring all the contributors together, and a Twitter handle [book available from the Guardian bookshop; or from Amazon.co.uk / Amazon.com, or high street booksellers].

Eradicating Female Genital Mutilation was launched on 4 November 2015 at The Guardian offices in London (introductory talk here) and both books were presented at a reception hosted by the Norwegian Embassy for the Inter-African Committee FGM Conference at the United Nations in Geneva, on 10 May 2016.

Reviews of Eradicating Female Genital Mutilation:
> Hilary Burrage has written the most definitive book ever on FGM.  An invaluable tool to help eradicate it worldwide. A personal triumph.  (The Guardian)
> … Outraged at ineffective child protection, Burrage provides a comprehensive, scholarly yet accessible guide – the first ethically correct textbook in the world about FGM and among the best ever – to professionals and all people of conscience.  (Tobe Levin von Gleichen, Harvard and Oxford Universities)
> The best book ever written about the sensitive subject of FGM : Amazon.com ***** (Sayydah Garrett, Pastoralist Child Foundation

Reviews of Female Mutilation: The truth behind the horrifying global practice of female genital mutilation:
> This is the essential companion volume to Hilary Burrage's 'Eradicating Female Mutilation'. While the latter provides a broad and deep perspective on the practice of FGM, this book gives space for the voices of victims and practitioners in the field. The author is to be commended for bringing together such a wide range of personal narratives... to consign a vile abuse of women to the dustbin of history. You will not fail to be engaged... by these accounts, even though some are harrowing. "Female Mutilation' is a landmark contribution to the literature on FGM.: Amazon ***** (Ron Stewart and another reader)

Hilary is a consultant sociologist and journalist. This is her professional website, to share thoughts on sociological analysis, social policy and good practice, especially in relation to female genital mutilation (FGM), child abuse, gendered violence and patriarchy. Hilary lives in London.

Statement On The Detention In Iran Of Social Anthropologist Kameel Ahmady

August 21, 2019

STATEMENT ON KAMEEL AHMADY

21 August 2019

We the undersigned are academics and social researchers in issues concerning women and girls.

We note with sadness the arrest and detention in Iran of our colleague (and friend), the acclaimed British-Iranian social anthropologist and researcher Kameel Ahmady. [1]

As awards for, and recognition of, his work demonstrate, [2] Kameel’s studies have contributed significantly to our understanding of very important matters such as female genital mutilation and child marriage in the Middle East.  That dialogue must continue.

We respectfully appeal to the Iranian authorities to release Mr Ahmady from imprisonment as a matter of urgency.

Should any legal charges against him continue, we also ask the authorities in Tehran immediately to permit Kameel access to legal representation of his free choice.

Kameel Ahmady is a globally respected academic and researcher whose work has made invaluable contributions to the fields of his endeavours. 

We thank the Iranian authorities for their understanding of our concerns about the present situation, to which we hope a positive resolution acceptable to all parties will be achieved very shortly.

1. Iran arrests British-Iranian academic Kameel Ahmady, Arab News, 14 August 2019
2. Appointment to the Inter-African Committee on Harmful Practices, Global Woman Peace Foundation Award
   and A Mini United Nations Convenes In Washington, D.C.

Signed:                Institution / affiliation

(see below for signatories)

If you are an academic, social researcher or similar and you would like to append your name and organisation to this Statement, please add your details in the Comment box below, or email your name and affiliation to Hilary [at] HilaryBurrage [dot] com, with the header ‘Kameel Ahmady Statement’.

Your support will then be added to the list of names below, and we will try to keep you informed of developments. Thank you.

.

Read more…

Kameel Ahmady: His Book ‘In the Name of Tradition’

August 18, 2019

My friend and colleague Kameel Ahmady, the British-Iranian social anthropologist and #EndFGM / #EndChildMarriage campaigner, has been detained in Tehran.  His wife, Shafagh Rahmani, says he is held in Evin Prison on unknown potential ‘national security’ charges.
This is a very serious situation and we must not double guess what lies behind Kameel’s arrest.  It may however be helpful to draw attention to Kameel’s first book, In the Name of Tradition, which reports on his research on female genital mutilation (FGM) in Iran.

The book was published by UnCUT/VOICES, a specialist #EndFGM publishing house owned by another very good friend, Tobe Levin.  She and I edited it and were so impressed by the work that we added a jointly written Afterword.  Here it is:

Read more…

Brexit Will Harm UK Work To End Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

July 28, 2019

I rarely re-post material I’ve already published, but this is an exception. Given the shifts in the UK political landscape over the past week or so, I am pleased that London4Europe has today republished my piece on FGM and Brexit, originally posted by UK in a Changing Europe.  Taking a more political position than usual in my work on FGM, I fear the damage Brexit would inflict is already starting to have impact. Intolerance and xenophobia are features of the UK’s current socio-political turmoil, and this cannot help us in seeking to protect the most vulnerable in our communities.

Here is the piece as it has now been republished:

Read more…

Epidemiology And Community Health: A Strained Connection?

July 2, 2019

The (dis?)connections between epidemiology as a field of enquiry, and the practice of community health in everyday reality, have interested me throughout my academic life.
How do the findings of research into health, illness and socio-economic context translate into public policy and work on the ground to improve people’s fitness and well-being? Or don’t they? – a question I asked in my previous post: End Female Genital Mutilation Programmes: Research And Evaluation*

I was reminded of this much earlier paper (below; originally published in Social Science and Medicine) just today because I saw it had recently been cited by some others who also ponder these questions. Perhaps we collectively still have work to do?

Read more…

End Female Genital Mutilation Programmes: Research And Evaluation

May 25, 2019

The UK Government National Audit Office recently invited submissions around their examination of the effectiveness of official development assistance.  Evaluation is an aspect of work on programmes to eradicate female genital mutilation (FGM) which has interested me as a sociologist for quite a while.  I therefore suggested some research questions which may be of interest to them or DfID.  National and international support for work to EndFGM is essential and it is critical that we continue to learn which aspects of these programmes are likely to have most positive impact.

There is a growing realisation that to achieve maximum impact, programmes of FGM eradication must be underpinned by a cogent discipline and understanding of what FGM is and how it maintains its legitimacy in the eyes of those who practise it: parallels here might be the studies of substance abuse or premature / teenage pregnancy.  FGM as an academic field is only now beginning to take shape (for instance, from the work at Oxford, Northwestern and other universities – please add other / your own FGM Studies courses in the Comments below). A critical part of the developing FGM Studies paradigm/s will be the development of even more effective research ‘toolkits’ to evaluate programmes of eradication at the local level, building on the pioneering global evaluations of EndFGM programmes by the UNFPA-UNICEF to establish FGM Studies as an academic discipline in its own right.

Read more…

Female Genital Mutilation And Gender Politics In Modern Egypt

February 11, 2019

In 2018 I wrote a review of three books on Egyptian gender politics for the journal Left History.  This essay has just now been published in Vol. 22, No. 1 (2018).  In my review I seek to understand the rationales by which female genital mutilation (FGM) continues in Egypt in a context where it seems both that many men strive to maintain patriarchy and also to demonstrate their nurturing intent, and that women try to reconcile their ‘modern’ and traditional roles. I am also critical in that field researchers did not challenge post-interview some respondents’ beliefs that FGM is necessary and harmless.

Maria Frederika Malmstrὅm The Politics of Female Circumcision in Egypt: Gender, Sexuality and the Construction of Identity (2016) I.B. Tauris, London and New York : 244 pp

Heidi Morrison Childhood and Colonial Modernity in Egypt (2015) Palgrave Macmillan, London and New York : 176 pp

Nefissa Naguib Nurturing Masculinities: Men, Food and Family in Contemporary Egypt (2015) University of Texas Press, Austin TX : 144 pp

Read more…

Westminster FGM Event: ‘Cutting Season’ Film, FGM In Canada Petition, Role Of UK GPs And National FGM Centre Funding

February 10, 2019

I was pleased to collaborate with Sarah Champion MP and her team on the event Sarah held in the House of Commons on 7 February 2019. A packed Jubilee Room audience saw the BBC version of Canadian film-maker Giselle Portenier’s documentary on FGM safe houses in Tanzania, followed by a lively Q and A. The panelists were Dr Phoebe Abe-Okwonga, Leethen Bartholomew, Cllr Anita Lower and me. Topics addressed included the need for Canada to take FGM seriously, how GPs in the UK can be supported to attend fully to the care which FGM survivors and potential victims require, and funding for the UK National FGM Centre,

Read more…

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