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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter March 8, 2017

Ban without Prosecution, Conviction without Punishment, and Circumcision without Cutting: A Critical Appraisal of Anti-FGM Laws in Europe

  • Dr. Maria Caterina La Barbera ORCID logo EMAIL logo
From the journal Global Jurist


This article focuses on anti-FGM laws aiming at eliminating gender-based violence. It uses intersectionality to question the underlying conceptualization of gender-based violence, and examines how the problem is represented, and which solutions have been proposed by French, British and Italian laws, showing their inconsistencies and biases. It also considers silenced dissenting voices by focusing on the proposal of “circumcision without cutting”. The main goal is to uncover how anti-FGM laws generate new forms of vulnerability for African descent women in Europe, calling for a more complex articulation of gender at the intersection with migration status, ethnicity and neo-colonial relations.


This article has gone through different drafting that have benefited from stimulating discussions with and encouraging comments from Laura Nader, Leti Volpp, Richard Shweder, Elisabetta Grande, Claudia Finotelli, Frank Foley, Giuseppe Martinico, Carol Bacchi, Isabel Trujillo, Alessandra Facchi, Francesco Biondo, Gianfrancesco Zanetti and Margarita del Olmo. I am grateful to all of them.


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Published Online: 2017-3-8

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