White Rose University Consortium logo
University of Leeds logo University of Sheffield logo York University logo

A vicious cycle of silence: What are the implications of the menstruation taboo for the fulfilment of women and girls' human rights and, to what extent is the menstruation taboo addressed by international human rights law and human rights bodies?

Boosey, R. and Wilson-Smith, E. (2014) A vicious cycle of silence: What are the implications of the menstruation taboo for the fulfilment of women and girls' human rights and, to what extent is the menstruation taboo addressed by international human rights law and human rights bodies? Research Report. ScHARR Report Series (29). School of Health and Related Research (ScHARR), University of Sheffield

Warning

There is a more recent version of this eprint available. Click here to view it.

[img]
Preview
Text
A vicious cycle of silence white rose report.pdf - Published Version

Download (1851Kb) | Preview

Abstract

Although half the population of the world has menstruated since the beginning of time, it has been a taboo topic in cultures across the world for almost as long. Recent grass roots activism in the development community, including the first ever menstrual hygiene day held in 2014, has highlighted the potential impact of menstruation in a poor income setting on women’s rights to sanitation, health and education. However, it has remained largely neglected by International stakeholders ostensibly working towards the realisation of universal human rights. A documentary analysis of the core international human rights treaties and key human rights body reports by relevant Treaty bodies found an overwhelming silence on menstruation, with identified references consisting largely of ambiguous allusions that provide an inadequate framework for addressing menstrual hygiene. This paper discusses why these international bodies have remained silent for so long; how this silence reflects the androcentric nature of the United Nations human rights system and forms part of a broader cyclical process of (re)producing the menstruation taboo; and the political consequences of this silence because as long as it prevails, action to address women and girls’ needs so that they are not held back by menstruation will be limited.

Item Type: Monograph (Research Report)
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: © 2014 School of Health and Related Research (ScHARR), University of Sheffield
Keywords: menstruation; menstrual hygiene; human rights; women's rights; women's empowerment; international politics; feminism
Institution: The University of Sheffield
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health (Sheffield) > School of Health and Related Research (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Symplectic Sheffield
Date Deposited: 19 Sep 2014 13:04
Last Modified: 23 Sep 2014 12:23
Status: Published
Publisher: School of Health and Related Research (ScHARR), University of Sheffield
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/80597

Available Versions of this Item

Actions (repository staff only: login required)