Carved Into A Woman

985 WordsApr 13, 20174 Pages
Carved into a Woman A country often called the “melting pot,” the United States of America delivers promises of freedom and prosperity; regardless of ethnicity, gender, or cultural group an individual belongs to. Not far away from here, many people live a less fortunate lifestyle in underdeveloped countries like Kenya. A life devoid of basic human rights that some Americans may take for granted, such as equality between men and women. The cultural practices, or gender roles, of the women and young girls in Kenya typically involve a painful ritual, which may not appeal to the average American teenager. The elders of the community refer to this ceremony as a young girl’s rite of passage, or a transition into the expected roles of a…show more content…
Another interesting Kenyan tradition that follows the birth of a child does not allow the mother to breastfeed her baby until the next day. Instead newborn babies consume a salt water solution. The mother and child spend the first four days recovering in seclusion; not even the father can visit until this time has passed (Birth Doc). Many other cultures encourage families to be present during childbirth and expect to have visitors following the birth. Care of the elders in the population also rests on the Kenyan woman’s shoulders, while she is also expected to run her own household. There are not places in Kenya to send one’s parents away to in their old age, such as the many nursing homes in American cities. Therefore, the community must come together and provide care for the older population. Women are already performing most tasks to provide for their own family. This practice begins when many mothers are still young girls, or students. Being the head of household often takes priority over seeking an education, if the woman was even fortunate enough to have had an opportunity to attend school. Many communities don’t have the luxury of fresh water nearby, which means someone must travel to collect it. This lifestyle leaves a huge burden on the Kenyan women, as they take on all

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