Nawal El Saadawi in this article shares both her personal experiences and professional advice as a physician on the issue of female circumcision. The article begins by discussing why female circumcision is considered important in Egypt- because it serves in ensuring girls remain virgins until they are married. Saadawi however points out that this procedure sometimes ends up resulting in complications. Saadawi highlights some of examples of responses from women she had come into contact with who had undergone circumcision. For example in one of the dialogues, a woman who had been circumcised recounts how she was unable to pass urine in the first few days after the procedure (122).
Perhaps one strong aspect of this article is that the author has been clear in stating what she feels about the topic. This has further been reinforced by the use of first hand experiences on what some of the ladies who are circumcised undergo. This helps make the article captivating to read and also makes it come across as a practical insight into female circumcision- and not just a theoretical write up. The author has also succeeded in making the pain of the procedure clear by avoiding euphemism and stating words just as they are. This is unlike some of the scholars in Egypt who prefer to remain silent about the issue. An example of this avoidance of the issue is shown in an incidence where a professor was angered by a question about the clitoris (123).
Among the consequences of female circumcision discussed in this article include medical complications and loss of sexual pleasure. Something interesting that Saadawi manages to capture is that matters on sexuality are not discussed openly in Egypt even among peers (124). Sex in the context of marriage is supposed to be enjoyed by both the husband and the wife. Saadawi throughout the article has shown that after female circumcision only the husbands enjoy it. This is not fair considering that it ends up being a one sided affair.
The article has succeeded in creating awareness on the topic of female circumcision, not only through the use of medical jargon but also through giving first hand experiences of women who have undergone the same.
Saadawi, Nawal. Circumcision of Girls. The Hidden Face of Eve. London, 1980: Zed Books