“To stop #FGM it is important to involve the owners of the tradition aka men”: An Exploratory Analysis of Social Media Discussions on Female Genital Mutilation

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Title: “To stop #FGM it is important to involve the owners of the tradition aka men”: An Exploratory Analysis of Social Media Discussions on Female Genital Mutilation
Authors: Mwendwa, PurityKroll, ThiloDe Brún, Aoife
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/11684
Date: 6-Feb-2020
Online since: 2020-11-11T09:08:16Z
Abstract: Female genital mutilation (FGM) remains a significant public health challenge and affects the lives of a million girls and women. Advocacy by men and their involvement in fighting the practice may influence the intention to have it performed; however, men often lack the opportunities and support to voice their stand. Increasingly, social media platforms are becoming effective and culturally relevant communication channels to engage ‘hard-to-reach’ populations on sensitive topics. This study explored the views on the involvement of men in discussions about FGM on Twitter. Data were obtained from Twitter-based activity for February 5th and 6th 2017 to coincide with the International Day of Zero Tolerance for FGM using the search terms ‘FGM and Men’. Thematic data analysis was conducted using a data- driven inductive approach and resulted in four main themes a) Prevailing attitudes of FGM b) Support for FGM c) FGM is an issue for men and d) Strategies to effect change. Our study suggests that men can play a role in the continuation of FGM but can also rally the abandonment of the practice. However, men were considered disengaged from the issue as most consider FGM a woman’s issue. The need to empower men through health literacy was deemed particularly influential in creating awareness and ultimately change. Young men may, in certain contexts, be important agents of change and male musicians or sportsmen may particularly be influential in effecting change. Our findings demonstrate that increased use and involvement of ‘hard to reach’ populations with social media can offer a window into real-time ongoing discussions of sensitive topics like FGM. Exploring the use of social media platforms and the content of the discussions among these populations can offer valuable insights of their perspectives on where change is needed in terms of designing effective interventions.
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Centre for Democracy, Research and Development
Journal: Journal of African Interdisciplinary Studies
Volume: 4
Issue: 1
Copyright (published version): 2020 Centre for Democracy, Research and Development
Keywords: Female genital mutilationMenBeliefsAttitudesSocial mediaTwitter
Other versions: http://cedred.org/jais/index.php/journal-articles
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Nursing, Midwifery & Health Systems Research Collection

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