- THE PUREST CHOICE -

Egypt, 2019

Work in progress  ​

We often tend to restrain Female Genital Mutilation to Subsaharan countries, unaware that the practice actually appeared first in Egypt in pharaonic times, while today 90% of the women aged 15-65 are still victims of circumcision.

The khitan-“purification” in Arabic-is now a practice deeply rooted in the social fabric of the country, indifferent of social or religious background. Although the phenomenon has slightly decreased the last decade, the political turmoil and the weight of traditions relying on religious arguments are preventing the implementation of concrete initiatives with real impact. 

My project therefore focuses on where actual change did occur; it focuses on women who took the decision to not perpetrate the practice despite social pressure. In the process, each woman becomes an activist at her own level. With the lack of effective “top to bottom”efforts, it's important to highlight stories of hope at the roots of society.

The project evolves around a series of portraits of these survivors of FGM, depicted with their daughters whom they refused to circumcise.

Far from being the passive victims as whom they are usually depicted as, these survivors of FGM have used their own traumatic experience to create positive change.

 

The portraits are a celebration of a possibility of progress, while pointing out the difficulties of the fight and the possible ways to overcome them.

Irine and Maria
Umm Malek and Malek
Marsa and Barbara-Anna
Do'aa and Mariam
Fayza and Maha
Marina, Yoanna and Febronia
Maha and Mariam

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