The Battle over our Bodies

Yesterday I was at a deeply disturbing informationsession about female genital mutilation/cutting. And there it dawned upon me once again how much of my work here at the UN that has been concerned with the control of female sexuality. It is like an absurd obsession. As if the battle ground has become the female body.

In the debates of rape being used as a tactic of war in Democratic Republic of Congo and elsewhere. Where controlling the bodies of women becomes a way to demoralise and humiliate your enemy. 

Or in the fact that the issue above others that keep diplomats awake throughout the night batteling over wordings is whether or not a woman should have the right to control her own childbearing.

Womens and their sexuality is described as something vulnerable that need protection under layers of clothing or as something threatening that needs to be tamed. Even so threatening that people put knifes in little girls and cut away their possibility to ever enjoy thier own sexuality.


2 responses to “The Battle over our Bodies

  1. Hi,

    Read your post, thanks for discussing these critical issues. I wanted to note that it is in large part thanks to the UN (specifically UNICEF and UNFPA) that thousands of communities in Senegal and other West African countries have been able to abandon FGC in an empowering, non-judgmental way, in partnership with an NGO called Tostan. The communities’ movements are now spreading to new countries and even into the diaspora.
    I know reading about these issues can be depressing, so I thought I would offer a little glimmer of hope…

    UNICEF has taken the work of leading NGOs and now has a clear way towards total abandonment in a short amount of time:


    • aheartinnewyork

      Thank you- a bit of hope is very welcome. Thank you for reading and I reminding of the good things that are done.

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