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Log in through your institution. Vaginal practices, such as intra-vaginal cleansing, drying and tightening, are suspected of placing women at higher risk of acquiring HIV and STIs. Yet, there is limited understanding of what these practices entail, what motivates women to undertake them and what their socio-cultural and historical meanings are.
This paper explores the range of vaginal practices used by women in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa and locates these within the context of local patterns of migration and understandings of sexual health and pleasure. Study activities took place at an urban and rural site employing qualitative research techniques: semi-structured interviewing and an additional ethnographic component in the rural site.
Vaginal practices were believed to be ubiquitous and a wide range of substances and procedures were described. Strong motivations for vaginal practices included women's desire to enhance men's sexual pleasure, ensure men's fidelity and exercise agency and control in their relationships. The common use of traditional medicines in this quest to maintain stable relationships and affect the course of love, suggests a complexity that cannot be captured by simple terms like 'dry sex'.
We argue instead that any interventions to change women's reliance on vaginal practices must recognise and attend to the broader social contexts in which they are embedded. The journal is broad and multi-disciplinary in focus, publishing papers on methodology as well as those that are empirical and conceptual in nature.
It offers a forum for debates on policy and practice, adopting a practitioner focus where appropriate. The journal also explores the policy and practice implications of research in the fields of culture and reproductive and sexual health.
Request Permissions. Smit, Ntsiki Manzini, Matthew F. Chersich and Eleanor M. Hanoi April , pp. Cite this Item Copy Citation. Export Citation Export to NoodleTools. Export to RefWorks. Export to EasyBib. Export a Text file For BibTex. Note: Always review your references and make any necessary corrections before using. Pay attention to names, capitalization, and dates. Read and download Log in through your school or library.
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Unlimited access to purchased articles. Ability to save and export citations. Custom alerts when new content is added. Abstract Vaginal practices, such as intra-vaginal cleansing, drying and tightening, are suspected of placing women at higher risk of acquiring HIV and STIs.Looking for sexy fat lady in Natal
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