Date of Award

Spring 5-12-2017

Document Type


First Advisor

Caroline M. Kobek Pezzarossi

Second Advisor

Deborah Schooler


Female Genital Circumcision (FGC) is a cultural practice by which female genitalia are cut for non-medical purposes. Although the Western world has seen the number of circumcised youth rise, very few studies have been conducted in developed countries. Even fewer are studies on minority groups regarding female circumcision; none explicitly involve deaf people. For this study, 76 deaf or hard of hearing individuals living in the U.S., whose primary means of communication was English or American Sign Language, completed a survey about FGC before and after viewing videos. One video showed an African woman who had experienced FGC, and the other showed an African doctor who repaired damages from FGC. The results from this study did not support the hypotheses that after participants watched the videos, they would (1) be more likely to know where the practice happens, and (2) would be more likely to understand the purpose of the practice. However, significance was found in changes from less to more agreement regarding whether circumcision is harmful, whether it is against human rights, and whether it is part of tradition. Significance was also found from more to less agreement that FGC happens to U.S. children. These results will help determine education around this practice so that individuals may interact appropriately with people who have undergone FGC.



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