Multiple identities: gender, power and the production of anthropological knowledge


  • Ngambouk V. Pemunta Central European University, Budapest



This 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.

Author Biography

Ngambouk V. Pemunta, Central European University, Budapest

Ngambouk V. Pemunta holds a PhD in Sociology and Anthropology from the Central European University in Budapest. His background includes tertiary teaching and NGO activism in Cameroon. His research interests include reproductive health, development, gender, social change, democratisation, human rights and culture and the anthropology of Africa. He can be contacted at vitalispemunta(AT)