Knowledge of Psycho-Sexual Effects of FGM/C:
Assessing the Evidence
Le Metropole, Alexandria
Abdel Tawab, is the Country Director
of Frontiers in Reproductive Health Program in Egypt. The program
conducts operations research that helps in solving service delivery
problems. Dr. Abdel Tawab is a public health physician with postgraduate
training in behavioral sciences and health education.
Marie B. Assaad,
A. Abdel Baky is a fourth year medical student in Alexandria
University’s Faculty of Medicine. He is also a board member of ASSA,
Alexandria Students’ Scientific Association and local officer of
Reproductive Health/AIDS (LORA) in the International Federation
of Medical Students’ Association (IFMSA). His field of work includes
conference and workshop organizing (social & scientific), fundraising,
project coordinating, as well as peer education. Mr. Abdel Baky
has previously worked with UNICEF, Caritas-Egypt , ISCGT- International
Society of Cancer and Gene Therapy , ATA -Alexandria Thoracic Association
, and the Egyptian Society of Bronchology.
Mohamed A. Bedri, is assistant
professor at the School of Family Sciences, Ahfad University for
Women, executive board member of Babiker Badri Scientific Association
for Women Studies and the President of the Sudanese Population Network.
Besides being a lecturer, Dr. Bedri is also a researcher, program
manager and trainer in the field of reproductive health in general
and women’s health issues in particular. Dr. Bedri has written and
developed several training and educational materials in these fields.
She has also carried out several researchers at national and international
levels in the area of women’s health.
Bur, is an African graduate fellow
at the Department of English and Comparative Literature at the American
University in Cairo. She
is also the coordinator of the INTACT Network at Population Council,
West Asia and North Africa Regional Office in Cairo. Her research
interests include issues of FGC, gender and sexuality in literature
Lucrezia Catania, heads the research division of the
Center for Preventing and Curing FGM and its Complications at the
Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics of the University of Florence.
A graduate of Medicine and Surgery at the University of Florence,
Dr. Catania specialized in gynaecology and obstetrics at the University
of Florence, and clinical sexology at the University of Pisa and
Florence, 2003. She is also the author and speaker of numerous researches
on FGM/C, such as I National Congress of the Italian Federation
of Scientific Sexology (2002), V National Congress of the Italian
Society of Health Psychology (2002), XVI World Congress of Sexology
(2003), XVII European Conference of Health Psychology (2003), III
International Meeting of the International Society for the Study
of Women and Sexual Health (2003).
El-Mofty, was born and raised in Cairo, Egypt in a family
where most of its members were members of the medical profession
and university professors. She joined the medical school of Cairo
University and left after her first year with her husband who was
on a Fullbright Scholarship to New York for four years where she
studied Psychology. Returning to Cairo she worked for the Ministry
of Health providing 300 schools in Western Cairo with psychological
assessment and therapy. She joined Ain Shams University in 1975
and for the past five years headed both the department of Psychology
at the Faculty of Arts and the Department of Humanities at the Faculty
of Environmental Research. She is presently involved in survey studies
dealing with the onset of menstruation in girls and issues regarding
Abdelhadi Eltahir is a holder of Medical Degree from
the Faculty of Medicine, University of Khartoum, and a Masters of
Public Health from Columbia University in New York. Currently Dr.
Eltahir is a Senior Technical Advisor at the Bureau for Global Health,
United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in Washington,
DC. He is a member of MCH team and Reproductive Health Core Group
for Africa Bureau. Dr. Eltahir spearheaded the USAID Initiatives
on Prevention of Post-Partum Hemorrhage and FGC abandonment worldwide.
Prior to this position he worked in Saudi Arabia as Head, Department
of Public Health at the Health Science College in Dammam. As Assistant
Clinical Professor at the School of Public Health, Columbia University,
he provided assistance for implementation of Prevention of Maternal
Mortality projects in West Africa. He worked in Sudan for many years
as a practicing medical doctor where he performed medical, obstetric
and surgical procedures as needed.
Recently Dr. Eltahir received the USAID Population, Health and Nutrition
Superior Service to the Field Award from Africa Bureau and Bureau
for Global Health. Also, he received a number of awards from Columbia
University, Royal Commission in Saudi Arabia, and Sudan Pediatric
Essén, MD, PhD, is a gynecologist in Sweden. She
is running a clinic for immigrant women and reproductive health
at the University Hospital of Malm?. She defended her thesis “Perinatal
mortality among women from Africa´s Horn in Sweden”,
2001. Her research area is SRHR (FGC, gender violence, honor violence,
maternal mortality, culture-sensitive family planning etc), working
in a multidisciplinary (obstetrician, epidemiologist, public health
and social anthropologist) group at Lund University, running projects
both in high- as well as lo- income countries.
Fahmy, is Technical Officer at the Department of Reproductive
Health and Research (RHR) of the World Health Organization, and
is responsible for co-coordinating work on FGC. She holds a MA in
Women’s Issues and International Relations, and PHC in Public Health.
Ms. Fahmy has been involved with women’s related issues focusing
on sexual health and FGC for 10 years, and has previously worked
with WHO, UNHCR, UNFPA, Population Council. She has also consulted
for CIDA and CEDPA, and previously participated in the design and
implementation of several research studies on FGC.
Gruenbaum, Ph.D., is Professor of Anthropology at California
State University, Fresno. In the 1970s, she lived in Sudan for five
years, teaching at the University of Khartoum and doing research
in medical and cultural anthropology. This was followed by additional
research in 1989, 1992 and 2004. In 2004, she was affiliated with
the Institute for Women, Gender and Development Studies at Ahfad
University in Omdurman and later served as a research consultant
for UNICEF and CARE on their FGM/C projects in eastern and western
Sudan. She authored “The Female Circumcision Controversy: An
Anthropological Perspective” (University of Pennsylvania Press,
Osman Hassan, M.B., B.C.H., D.G.O., D.S., M.D. Professor,
Obst. & Gyn. Dept., Mansoura Faculty of Medicine, Egypt. Secretary
General, The Egyptian Society of Gynaecology and Obstetrics. Executive
Director, The Egyptian Fertility Care Foundation, has published
extensively in the field of gynaecology, obstetrics, family planning
and reproductive health, and has conducted biomedical, socio-medical
and socio-demographic research in the above fields. Dr. Ezzeldin
has also conducted training programs in research methodologies and
in different areas of reproductive health. Special research interests
include contraceptive technologies, reproductive health issues especially
postabortion care, FGC, maternal morbidity and infertility.
R. Heiman, Ph.D. was named Director of The Kinsey Institute
for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction at Indiana University,
in June, 2004. She is appointed as Professor of Psychology at Indiana
University and Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at IU Medical School.
She comes to The Kinsey Institute and IU from the School of Medicine
at the University of Washington, where she was Professor of Psychiatry
and Behavioral Sciences, Director of the Reproductive and Sexual
Medicine Clinic and Associate Director for Psychotherapy Programs
at the Outpatient Psychiatry Center. She is a researcher, clinician
and an international authority in the field of human sexuality.
Dr. Heiman serves on the Editorial Boards of Archives of Sexual
Behavior, Psychology and Human Sexuality, Menopause and Editor-in-Chief
of the Annual Review of Sex Research (2000-2004). She has edited
a special issue of the Journal of Sex Research (August, 2000) focused
on Medical Advances in Human Sexuality. In 2001, she was honored
with the Distinguished Scientific Achievement Award from the Society
of the Scientific Study of Sex, and was named Distinguished Psychologist
by the Washington State Psychological Association. She has served
on the National Institutes of Mental Health IRG as a study section
member of the Life Course and Prevention committee, and has served
on the Violence and Criminal Behavior committee and the Violence
and Traumatic Stress committee. From 1997-1999, she was a national
reviewer on the Social Science Research Council’s Human Sexuality
Research Fellowship Program. She has been a panelist on the National
Institutes of Health Consensus Development Conference on interventions
to prevent HIV risk behavior (1997) and co-chaired the Second Cape
Cod Conference on Sexual Function and Assessment in Clinical Trials:
Female Sexual Dysfunction (1998). She is currently an NIH special
reviewer as well as a consultant to several pharmacology firms.
She has been elected as; President of the International Academy
of Sex Research, National Board Member of the Society for the Scientific
Study of Sex, and President of the American Board of Family Psychology.
Dr. Heiman received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the State
University of New York at Stony Brook. She then was funded by an
NIMH Postdoctoral Research Fellowship for work in the Department
of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at SUNY Stony Brook. She was
a Research Scientist with the Long Island Research Institute and
a faculty member in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral
Sciences at SUNY Stony Brook before going to the University of Washington
for 23 years. Dr. Heiman has published broadly in the area of sex
research on male and female sexual function and dysfunction, psychophysiological
components of female and male sexual arousal patterns, outcome research
of sexual dysfunction, and correlates of histories of childhood
sexual and physical abuse.
Martin Hilber, is a Technical Officer in the Department
of Reproductive Health and Research in the Unit on Gender and Reproductive
Rights. Since 2002, she has been the coordinator of the new departmental
area of work on Sexual Health. The work on sexual health focuses
on building the evidence base for sexual health programming and
research on gender, sexuality and vaginal practices. In addition
to working on sexuality and sexual health, she also works on Human
Rights, policies and maternal and newborn health. Ms. Hilber has
a degree in development economics and politics and a degree in public
health. She is currently pursuing a PhD in public health focusing
on health policy.
Abdulcadir Omar Hussen, M.D., was born in Mogadishu, Somalia. Dr.
Hussen is currently head of the Research Center for Preventing and
Curing FGM and its Complications at the Department of Gynaecology
and Obstetrics of Florence. Graduate of Medicine and Surgery, Dr.
Hussen has specialized in Gynaecology and Obstetrics at the University
of Florence. He is also in charge of Social Health Coordination
for immigrants in Tuscany. In addition, Dr. Hussen is coordinator
and organizer of the first international congress “Contribution
to a Socio-Medical Integration of Extra-Communitarian Immigrants”
and organizer/coordinator of four conferences on contraception for
immigrant communities of African, Arab, Eastern European and Asian
backgrounds (held in Milan, Florence, Turin and Trieste).
Lethem Ibrahim, Ph.D. is regional director for West Asia
and North Africa at the Population Council, a position she has held
since 1991. She previously served as the Middle East program officer
for urban poverty and women’s studies programs for the Ford Foundation,
Cairo. Ibrahim received an M.A. from the American University of
Beirut and a Ph.D. from Indiana University. She was principal investigator
on a major national survey of adolescents and their parents conducted
in Egypt in 1997, as well as on a current impact study of Ishraq,
a sports and empowerment program for rural girls. Ibrahim advises
groups in Jordan, Pakistan, and Iran on national youth research,
and is a member of a regional working group that conducts research
on issues related to the Arab family. She is developing new programs
to enhance local philanthropy and forge stronger links between research,
activist, and policy communities. Ibrahim received the Lifetime
Achievement Award from the Association of Middle East Women’s Studies
in 2003, and was inducted into the Educators Hall of Fame (USA)
in 1999. She serves on numerous international boards.
R. Elise B. Johansen, is a PhD student of medical anthropology,
University of Oslo. She has conducted research in Norway focusing
on the perceptions of women and men affected by FGC now living in
Norway on the practice and their experience; birth-care for infibulated
women. Previously published articles on FGC include themes of pain,
sexuality and birth care/birth experiences. She is presently leader
of the OK Project, a national project in Norway working with information
and communication related to FGC, with affected communities and
public services. Johansen is a former researcher on non-cutting
female initiation rituals (Tanzania), and reproductive health rituals,
sexuality and humor among Norwegian youth. She is presently planning
a post-doctoral study titled “Is All Genital Mutilation Mutilating?”
on comparing different genital practices in relation to health,
ethical and political definitions compared to local meanings.
Sarah Johnsdotter, PhD, is a Research Fellow at the Department of
Social Anthropology, Lund University, Sweden. She has been conducting
research in cooperation with Dr. Birgitta Essen for eight years,
on issues of FGC and legal aspects, cultural exchange due to migration
and sexual ideologies. Her doctoral thesis, “Created by God:
How Somalis in Swedish Exile Reassess the Practice of Female Circumcision”
was completed in 2002.
Lovel, is Senior Lecturer (WHO Collaborating Center for
Primary Care), University of Manchester, UK. She has set up and
run nationally recognized research training (MRes Health and Community).
Previously she worked for 15 years at the Center for International
Child Health, University College, London, latterly as Director MSc
and Child Health. Her FGM research started in 1996 with a WHO commissioned
systematic literature search and review of health complications
from which she developed 4 research protocols to investigate childbirth,
psychosexual, psychological comorbidity sequelae in sociocultural/socioeconomic
aspects. The childbirth study is ongoing in a 6-community completing
soon. She is also working with the Somali community in Manchester.
Zeinab Mohamed, BSc in Nursing,
is a Somali registered nurse and midwife, PhD currently in progress
at the University of Salford, U.K. She is currently working as a
Research Associate in a research project at the University of Manchester.
She has also previously worked as a Research Associate on different
projects looking into the heads of migrant communities in the UK
and access and inclusion initiatives. She is also on the Board of
different organizations both voluntary and governmental bodies working
with minority ethnic communities in the UK investigating how to
improve the quality of life for the communities.
Nour, MD is actively researching the health and policy
issues regarding female genital cutting (FGC) locally and internationally.
She has spoken in numerous academic and national conferences regarding
the medical management of women who have undergone this practice.
Committed to the eradication of FGC, she travels throughout the
country conducting workshops to educate African refugees and immigrants
on the medical complications and legal issues of this practice.
She was recently on an FGC task force for the American College of
Obstetrics and Gynecology. She served as the primary author for
Female Genital Cutting, Clinical Management of Circumcised Women,
published by ACOG. This slide-lecture kit aims to educate obstetricians-gynecologists
on the medical management of circumcised women in the United States
and Canada. Dr. Nour is a board certified Obstetrician/Gynecologist
and is the Director of the Obstetric Resident Practice at the Harvard-affiliated
Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA. She is an assistant
professor at Harvard Medical School. She has also established an
African Women’s Health Practice that provides appropriate health
and outreach programs to the African community in Boston. Dr. Nour
was honored as a 2003 MacArthur Foundation Fellow for creating the
country’s only center of its kind that focuses on both physical
and emotional needs of female circumcision victims. This work has
been covered by the Associated Press, New York Times, Washington
Post, NPR, O and Essence magazine and CNN Espaniol.
Born in the Sudan and raised in Egypt and England, Dr. Nour came
to the United States to attend Brown University. She received her
medical degree from Harvard Medical School in 1994 and completed
a chief residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Brigham and
Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA in 1998. She received the Commonwealth
Fund/Harvard University Fellowship in Health Policy where she obtained
her MPH at Harvard School of Public Health in 1999. She was subsequently
awarded the H. Richard Nesson Fellowship from the Brigham and Women’s
Hospital for her community work and outreach.
Friday Okonofua is a Professor in the Department of Obstetrics and
Gynaecology and Provost, College of Medical Sciences, at the University
of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria. His present appointments include
the post of Secretary-General of the Society of Gynaecology and
Obstetrics of Nigeria (SOGON), and Director of the Women’s Health
and Action Research Center. Prof Okonofua is also the Editor of
the African Journal of Reproductive Health, Journal of Medicine
and Biomedical Research, and Women’s Health Forum. He is the Associate
Editor of the Nigerian Medical Journal as well as a member of the
international advisory group of the British Journal of Obstetrics
and Gynaecology. He is a reviewer of reproductive health articles
to several journals including the British Journal of Obstetrics
and Gynaecology, Studies in Family Planning, African Journal of
Medicine and Medical Sciences, Nigerian Medical Journal and West
African Journal of Medicine. Other appointments include Adjunct
Visiting Scientist in Reproductive Health, Harvard School of Public
Health, Boston, USA, and Adjunct and PHD Candidate, Department of
Public Health, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. Prof. Okonofua
has also published extensively on women’s health issues.
Sheble graduated from The American University in Cairo
in 2000 with a double BA, Arabic and Islamic and Studies, English
and Comparative Literature and a minor in Gender Studies. Currently
working as a teaching assistant of Arabic Literature at AUC, finishing
MA in Arabic Literature (research topic: feminism and Sufism in
modern Arabic literature written by women in Egypt), working as
editor of school books and an independent researcher and activist
in the field of women’s rights, especially violence against women,
namely FGM and the phenomenon of battered wives. Ms. Sheble has
published articles in a number of encyclopedias and journals, such
as the Encyclopedia of African Studies, and Tiba (a feminist journal
published by New Woman Research Centre). She has also prticipated
in merous panels discussion, conferences, TV interviews concerning
the topics of FGM/C, e image of women in the media with focus on
the image of veiled women in the media.
Johannes Van Dam is the director of the Robert H. Ebert
Program on Critical Issues in Reproductive Health. Prior to this
position, he was the deputy director and senior program associate
for the Population Council’s International Programs Division. He
coordinates operations research on sexually transmitted infections
and HIV/AIDS and serves as liaison to a number of international
organizations. Prior to joining the Population Council, van Dam
worked for UNAIDS providing technical assistance to national AIDS
committees to help develop, implement, and evaluate program activities.
Van Dam also served as a medical officer with the World Health Organization’s
Global Programme on AIDS and as a public health expert for the Commission
of European Communities’ AIDS Task Force. Van Dam has given presentations
at conferences and workshops around the world. He received his M.D.
degree from the University of Amsterdam, a diploma in Tropical Medicine
and Hygiene from the Royal Tropical Institute in Amsterdam, and
an M.S. in Community Health in Developing Countries from the London
School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of London.