Multiple identities: gender, power and the production of anthropological knowledge
AbstractThis article discusses my "outsider within" status in terms of gender, age, nationality, race and perceived positionality and alliance with the "Whiteman" (by virtue of my western educational status) during my fieldwork. My research centered on the contentious debate over female circumcision in Southwest Cameroon. It examines the gulf between perceived anti-female circumcision activism and the quest for anthropological knowledge through ethnography. My multiple identities expose illuminating insights about the larger global context of power in which the ritual procedure is intertwined and how they may be shaping the practices on the ground, as well as on the political complexity of both theoretical and applied research.