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Ellen Gruenbaum recently returned from Sudan, where she spent
part of her sabbatical as a Visiting Professor at Ahfad University
for Women in Omdurman. During February and March she advised
students in their master’s degree program in Gender and
Development Studies and did research on the social movement against
traditional female genital cutting practices. Being in Sudan also
gave her the opportunity to return to the two villages she has been
studying since the 1970s for additional research.
In May, Dr. Gruenbaum returned to Khartoum as a consultant for
UNICEF, carrying out four community studies for a research project
on female genital cutting in West Kordofan and Kassala states.
Although the original plan included communities in South Darfur as
well, Gruenbaum’s research team had to postpone that portion
of the project. Instead, Gruenbaum worked on research for CARE,
investigating the results two years later of one community’s
declaration of intent to discontinue female genital cutting.
“It was great to see so many of my Sudanese friends from
the past, to catch up with the political and social changes since
my last visit twelve years ago.”
In addition to writing, Gruenbaum will be using this new
research in her teaching in anthropology and women’s studies