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Sexuality education, gender and health issues related to puberty rites for girls: research

Thelmah X. Maluleke

Abstract


It is well documented that initiation or puberty rites for girls are about sexuality, sex education, and sexuality education. However, very little has been revealed about the content of the sexuality education. This article aims to describe the content of sexuality education and sexual health information given to girls during the puberty rites (vukhomba); to identify gender and health issues within the rites; and to determine the reasons that encourage girls to attend the initiation. The study was designed as a qualitative, exploratory, descriptive and contextual research project. The ethnographic strategy was used to gain access to the "vukhomba" to view and describe the rites from an emic perspective. The ethnography strategies allowed the researcher to describe the content of the sexuality education in the "vukhomba" from the community's point of view. The findings were that sexuality education in the puberty rites for girls is limited to personal hygiene, maintaining virginity, self-control and social morals.



Navorsing het aangetoon dat inlywings- of puberteitsrites vir meisies gerig is op seksualiteit, seksonderrig, en seksualiteitsopvoeding. Baie min is egter bekend oor die inhoud van seksualiteitsopvoeding. Hierdie artikel het ten doel om die inhoud van seksualiteitsopvoeding en seksuele gesondheidsinligting wat tydens die puberteitsrites (vukhomba) aan meisies gegee word, te beskryf; om geslags- en gesondheidsake binne die rites te identifiseer; en om vas te stel wat dit is wat meisies aanspoor om die inlywing by te woon. Die studie is ontwerp as 'n kwalitatiewe, ondersoekende, beskrywende en kontekstuele navorsingsprojek. Die etnografiese strategie is gebruik om toegang tot die "vukhomba" te verkry, om dit waar te neem, en die rites vanuit die perspektief van 'n deelnemer te kan beskryf. Die etnografiese strategieë het die navorser ook in staat gestel om die inhoud van seksualiteitsopvoeding in die "vukhomba" vanuit die perspektief van die gemeenskap te beskryf. Die bevindinge was dat seksualiteitsopvoeding in die puberteitsrites vir meisies tot persoonlike higiëne, die behoud van maagdelikheid, selfbeheersing en sosiale moraliteit beperk is.


(Health SA Gesondheid: interdisciplinary research journal: 2003 8(3): 61-67)





Health SA Gesondheid.   ISSN: 1025-9848