James DeMeo

Presented at the Fourth International Symposium on Sexual Mutilations,
University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland, August 9-11, 1996.

The historical and cultural aspects of the genesis of genital mutilation are examined in this presentation. While genital mutilation was absent among the earliest peoples, the custom developed after c.3000 BC with the growth of the patriarchal authoritarian state. Maps of historical locations and modern-day distribution of the traits among native, subsistence-level peoples will demonstrate global geographical variations in genital mutilation, both male and female. The absence of physiological and/or psychological benefits from genital mutilation is discussed in light of modern biomedical research results. The cross-cultural evidence of the psychological motives for genital mutilation is explored.

[The complete paper is published in Sexual Mutilations: A Human Tragedy, New York: Plenum Press, 1997 (ISBN 0-306-45589-7).]

James DeMeo, Ph.D., earned his doctorate at the University of Kansas and has served on the Faculty of Geography at Illinois State University and the University of Miami. He is currently the Director of the Orgone Biophysical Research Laboratory, editor of the environmental journal, Pulse of the Planet, and author of The Orgone Accumulator Handbook.

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