An overview of the african myth for the virgin cleansing

Many times, the issue of virgin cleansing myth gets bogged down in numbers and statistics of child rapes and their causes. How does the myth function?

The stigma attached to AIDS also stops many people from seeking information or health services to shield their statuscontributing to further transmission. An earlier study in by sexual health educators in Gauteng reported that 32 percent of the survey participants believed the myth. According to this notion individuals who are "blind, deaf, physically impaired, intellectually disabled, or who have mental-health disabilities" are raped under the erroneous presumption that individuals with disabilities are sexually inactive and therefore virgins.

Leclerc-Madlala has recognized the myth as a potential factor in infant rape in South Africa. What really should be a matter of concern is that the same iteration of psychosocial denial that informs public discourse on AIDS in Africa has also seemed to affect public discourses on the virgin myth.

Other cultural factors, such as girls being married to older men, increase the likelihood of HIV transmission [ citation needed ].

This stems from another misconception that disabled individuals are not sexually active. In an in-depth study titled On the virgin cleansing myth: Given the immense scale of the AIDS epidemic in Africa in late twentieth century, it was only a matter of time that the supposed beneficial effects of having sex with a virgin should have been thought to extend to men with AIDS or HIV.

Impact of the myth While the virgin cleansing myth may be rooted in traditional medicinal concepts and ignorance of facts of HIV, the effects of this practice have been far more horrifying. At the end of there were around This concept has been explored by Nora Ellen Groce and Reshma Trasi in their work titled Rape of individuals with disability: The minor character Mattumbo is stopped from raping a baby based on the belief that sex with a virgin will cure his AIDS.

In this way Leclerc-Madlala shows how the broad category of prevention-treatment-cure is encompassed in virgin cleansing therapy, whereby sexual intercourse with a virgin is also thought to provide a type of vaccination against the threat of future HIV infection.

If it had been, given the extensive injuries common in child rape, a higher rate of seroconversion would be expected. One of the most tragic fallouts of the epidemic has been horrifying notions like virgin cleaning, borne out of desperation and ignorance.

The Virgin Cleansing Myth

In fact according to UNICEF estimates, hundreds of young girls have been raped as a fallout of the virgin cleansing myth. AIDS and the folk belief of virgin cleansing5.

Psychologist Mike Earl-Taylor indicates the myth was first reported in 16th century Europe but actually gained prominence in 19th century Victorian England where having sex with a virgin was touted as a cure for syphilis and gonorrhea among other sexually transmitted diseases.

What does it mean? However not everyone is convinced that the high rates of child rape in parts of Africa is a direct cause of virgin cleansing myth. According to historian Hanne Blank, the origin of the myth can be traced back to Christian legends of virgin martyrs whose purity served as a form of protection in battling demons.

In South Africa, the earliest recorded incidence of virgin cleansing myth dates back to the end of the Second World War when returning soldiers triggered an epidemic of venereal disease in the Eastern Cape1.

Virgin cleansing myth

The virgin myth is also thought to be linked to rape in individuals with disabilities. It has only been with the increasing media attention given to especially horrific cases of child rape in the past year and the interest shown by overseas press in the issue of rape in African countries, that the virgin myth has got the kind of scrutiny it deserves.

Community definitions of rape need to be reframed so that all acts of coercive sex are viewed as rape, irrespective of the circumstances, and develop an environment in which men are deterred from rape through threat of punishment.

Ultimately the question is not whether or not the virgin myth is leading to increased rapes of children. The claim that the myth drives either HIV infection or child sexual abuse in Africa is disputed by researchers Rachel Jewkes and Helen Epstein, [8] as well as by research on convicted sex offenders in Malawi, where no evidence was found to support the idea that the virgin cleansing myth prompted any rapes.

According to them Infant and child rape will be prevented only if these issues can be ameliorated. Another country where the myth is extremely prevalent is Zimbabwe, and here it is perpetuated by traditional healers advising HIV-positive men to cure their disease by having sex with virgin girls3.

History[ edit ] The myth was first reported in 16th century Europe and gained prominence in 19th century Victorian England as a cure for syphilis and gonorrhea among other sexually transmitted diseases. The critics believe that the direction of much of this violence at women and girls might be explained by sex inequalities, a culture of male sexual entitlement, and the climate of relative impunity for rape.Virgin cleansing myth topic.

The virgin cleansing myth (also referred to as the virgin cure myth, virgin rape myth, or simply virgin myth) is the belief that having sex with a virgin girl cures a man of HIV/AIDS or other sexually transmitted diseases. South Africa's AIDS epidemic has been fertile ground for rumours about AIDS.

An example is the 'virgin cleansing myth' that for some time was assumed to encourage child rape but for which there is. Inpsychologist Mike Earl-Taylor wrote that the virgin cure myth may explain the staggering rise in child or infant rapes in South Africa, which is facing an HIV/AIDS epidemic.

UNICEF has attributed the rape of hundreds of. Africa in the prestigious Lancet, with the authors speculating on the role of the ‘virgin myth’ as a motivating factor for this particular crime (Pitcher and Bowley, ). In South Africa, the earliest recorded incidence of virgin cleansing myth dates back to the end of the Second World War when returning soldiers triggered an epidemic of venereal disease in the Eastern Cape 1.

Given the immense scale of the AIDS epidemic in Africa in late twentieth century, it was only a matter of time that the supposed beneficial effects.

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An overview of the african myth for the virgin cleansing
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