PDF/EPUB multi channel.co ô Circumcision: A History of the World's Most Controversial

From the extraordinarily painful initiation rite of the ancient Egyptians through the Hebrew purification ritual through its use by nineteenth century doctors as prevention for ailments including bedwetting paralysis and epilepsy circumcision has had a long and varied history Perhaps the greatest mystery however is its persistence over time through vastly different social contextsHistorian of medicine David Gollaher takes a comprehensive look at the practice in this lively scholarly history Circumcision also addresses the growing controversy over the procedure’s continuance and those opposing routine circumcision will find support here Gollaher concludes that “if male circumcision were confined to developing nations it would by now have emerged as an international cause célèbre”

10 thoughts on “Circumcision: A History of the World's Most Controversial Surgery

  1. says:

    Damn This was a really interesting book Left me feeling like circumcision is indeed pretty fucked up I miss my foreskin

  2. says:

    It's an interesting history of circumcision I actually learned a lot especially about how circumcision became so routine in the United States which I had really wondered about The author gives facts which I appreciate This is not some emotional diatribe or an attempt to sway ones opinion It seems with some other sources that the facts get garbled in personal missionsbut I never got the impression that this author was trying to say what is right or wrong I didn't think he seemed completely unbiased either It is a well presented history though and I would say uite thorough The politics and social class issues really fascinated me The Ode made me laugh I thought it was odd that when discussing circumcision in Judaism the author didn't really address the 8th day which I think is significant I would not say that the author wrote in a biased manner he just did not seem completely unbiased in the end but then it is probably easy to make the anti circumcision movement seem reasonable when most of pro reasons are simply cultural a part of personal beliefs and group identity in the not so reasonable but often very important realm of tradition

  3. says:

    Following the birth of Titus I had a couple of conversations about circumcision that led me to wonder about how and why it's such a popular surgery in the US since it's not primarily done for religious reasons I found this book which the author claims is a history not a polemic or a tract for the times He also claims that he endeavored to write a balanced account Unfortunately he failed to do so and the book which does provide helpful information in essentially an argument against routine circumcision I'm glad to have read it and I've certainly learned a lot about the reasons why circumcision is so common in the US; I just wish that the author had been able to create a truly balanced account

  4. says:

    I'm slightly disturbed by Gollaher's suggestion that he is trying to present an even handed description of genital mutilation reading that at the beginning I was uite worried that he would fall into the journalist's fallacy of having to show both sides as euivalent However he does a good job of discussing the reality of this monstrosity in a referenced book I probably am going to buy a copy for myself so I can have one for reference if needed

  5. says:

    This book is very well organizedI got the feeling that I was traveling through history while also spanning different angles on circumcision at the same time I found the answers to the uestions I was looking for within the chapter I expected to find them What I didn't expect was for this book to gradually feel like a story

  6. says:

    “It’s a lot easier to see what’s irrational in another culture than it is to see it in our own” This uote by Cheryl Chase serves to highlight some of the insights that this book gives into our culture Gollaher takes the reader through the beginnings of this practice not only from the historicalreligious side but also from the anthropological one giving us a clear picture of the pervasiveness of this ritual as well as several other forms of bodily mutilations in almost all cultures He then switches to the way in which this ritual was accepted as part of the medical norm based on research that was anecdotal based and which has been discredited He goes through the medical literature to clearly explain the insignificance of this procedure in terms of preventive medicine to the point where any benefit derived from it is offset by the complications that arise from it as well Yet the greatness of the book aside from Gollaher’s ability to state all the evidence without poisoning it with his own opinion is found in the last chapter This chapter dealing with female circumcision is the perfect close to the book because he once again does not voice his opinion but puts forth all the relevant historical anthropological medical and psychological evidence needed to understand this practice The same evidence that he previously expanded on for the commonly accepted male surgery Thus it becomes painfully clear to the reader that any defense of one practice can be made for the other and it serves to highlight how atrocious both are and how by an accident of history one has become so normal so as to seem perfectly innocuous If you want a book to make you aware of both the hidden faults of medical research and of our own cultural biases you’ve found it

  7. says:

    It’s the most common surgery in the United States Yet in many people’s eyes it’s barbaric and indefensible Yet if it’s barbaric how does it come to be practiced worldwide by unrelated cultures cultures both primitive and modern? Yet if it’s not barbaric how can it be justified scientifically and why do most cultures shun it? What's the rationale for it? Or should rationalism be omitted from the discussion? David Gollaher offers a thorough history and interpretation of the practice covering everything from its pre biblical roots to the scientific debate He gives voice to all sides those tending to view the uncircumcised as lacking culture manners intelligence and in a word civilization those who defend circumcision only for their own societal group and justify it culturally but not medically those who see it as the product of an unfortunate suspension of rational thought by otherwise reasonable people who wouldn't inflict unjustified pain on helpless children in any other circumstance and those who don't uite fit into any of these categories Informative provocative and very fair Jeff B Reader's Services

  8. says:

    Gollaher does a good job of historicizing genital cutting as a cultural practice without denigrating the people who engage in it although the religious and anthropological aspects of this book were less interesting to me than the political I was particularly intrigued by how the American anti circumcision movement as much as it can be said to exist as a distinct formation transcends the Left Right divide; in the 1990s it used the rhetoric of anti abortion and men's movement activists value of life intactpure bodies defense of the defenseless misandry linking the procedure to later afflictions a la the abortion breast cancer link but also employed the discourses used by gay men's and intersex advocacy groups opennessshamelessness informed consent cosmetic versus medical necessity suspicion of the medical industrial complex

  9. says:

    It took me months to get through this book Definitely not a fast read but then I dipped in here and there with no urgency to finish As a review it didnt measure up to my expectations as a discussion it was merely ok as for insights into the practice his take on circumcision's history especially for males was not revelatory I wanted but cant fault the book for being a nice overview

  10. says:

    A detailed look at circumcision both in ancient and modern times While the author claims to be unbiased I felt that he leaned slightly in the anti circ camp this could be my own views coming through though Overall I thought it was a good review of the practice