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卫生巾不能去除女性身体的耻感与污名

更新时间:2018-4-3 21:58:28 来源:千亿千亿国际娱乐官网 作者:佚名

Menstrual Pads Can’t Fix Prejudice
卫生巾不能去除女性身体的耻感与污名

The period is finally having its moment.

月经终于受到了关注。

In the last decade, the difficulties women and girls across the globe face during menstruation have inspired a raft of grass-roots campaigns. “Period poverty” activists seek to make menstrual products more affordable and available. International agencies like Plan International, Water Aid, U.N. Women and Unicef are supporting menstrual hygiene programs in dozens of countries. Access to safe, accessible bathrooms and materials to manage menstruation is now recognized as a human rights issue that involves many other areas of development, like clean water, education and gender equality.

在过去十年中,全世界的成年女性和女孩在月经时面对的困难引发了大量的草根运动。“经期贫困”活动人士试图制作出更经济、更普及的月经用品。而千亿国际娱乐培幼会(Plan International)、水援助组织(Water Aid)、联合国妇女署(U.N. Women)以及联合国儿童基金会(Unicef)等千亿国际娱乐机构也在许多国家中支持月经卫生项目。能够拥有安全且可以负担的卫生间以及应付月经的物品现已被认为是人权问题,涉及其他许多方面的发展,如清洁饮水、教育和性别平等。

These shifts are certainly heartening. For centuries, around the world, menstruation has been treated as a source of shame, rather than as a normal, healthy part of women’s lives. Initiatives to “make menstruation matter” are both welcome and overdue.

这些转变无疑令人振奋。几个世纪以来,在世界各地,月经一直被视为一种耻辱,而不是被视为女性生活中正常、健康的一部分。“让月经变得重要”的倡议很受欢迎,只是来得有点晚。

Why, then, after years studying these efforts, do I feel ambivalent? Because too many of them have opted to focus on providing women with new products, failing to substantively fight the core problem surrounding menstruation: cultural stigma.

可是,在研究这些努力多年之后,我为什么有一种矛盾的心态?因为有太多运动关注的是为女性提供新产品,而不是从实质上解决月经的核心问题:文化耻辱。

Consider the humble piece of cloth. Many Westerners are horrified to learn that repurposed cloth is commonly used by women in poor countries to manage their periods. Yet cloth is absorbent, readily available, cheap and sustainable. Folded or cut to size, changed as necessary and properly washed and dried, it can be sanitary and effective.

想想那块不起眼的布吧。许多西方人震惊地得知,贫穷国家的妇女普遍使用旧布来吸收经血。但是,布的吸水性很好,容易获得,廉价且可持续。折叠或剪成合适的大小,在必要时更换,进行适当的清洗和干燥,这样一来,布就可以成为一种卫生而有效的经期用品。

Still, many programs are hustling to replace this traditional method with commercial products. In addition to the nongovernmental organizations that make products their priority, start-ups are seeding microbusinesses in which, say, Rwandan, Indian and Ugandan women make and sell pads. Such an approach falls under the category of a “technological fix”: a seemingly simple solution to what is, in reality, a complex problem.

但是,许多运动在倡导用商业产品取代这种传统的方法。除了那些将商业产品作为优先考虑事项的非政府组织之外,一些初创公司正在扶植一些微型工坊,让卢旺达、印度和乌干达等地的妇女在这些工坊里生产和销售卫生巾。这种方法落入了“技术修复”的怪圈:一个看似简单的解决方案,但实际上它要解决的是一个非常复杂的问题。

Such interventions can be helpful, and in some circumstances even necessary, but they fail to address the root issues. No menstrual product is effective for a schoolgirl who lacks access to a clean, secure toilet, as is the case in many poor countries. Stigma about menstruation often undermines proper use, and a woman’s fear of inadvertently revealing she is menstruating remains a distraction and a burden.

这些干预措施可能是有益的,在某些情况下甚至是必要的,但它们不能解决根本问题。对于一个无法进入清洁、安全的厕所的女学生,任何月经卫生产品都是无效的,而这种情况在许多贫穷国家都有。对月经的羞耻感通常会影响月经产品的适当使用,而女性常常担心无意中暴露出自己月经来潮,这对她们来说,也是一种干扰和负担。

These fears and stigmas are prevalent in the rich world, too. As the historian Joan Jacobs Brumberg has shown, in the United States at the turn of the century, menstruation became increasingly medicalized: Doctors, who were mostly men, and increasingly viewed as experts, coached mothers to socialize their daughters to keep tidy and discreet. Menarche, the first menstrual period, was effectively reduced from a sign of womanhood to a “hygienic crisis.”

这种恐惧和污名在富裕国家也很普遍。正如史学家琼·雅各布斯·布伦伯格(Joan Jacobs Brumberg)所展示的,在本世纪初的美国,月经变得越来越医学化:医生大部分是男性,他们更多是被视为专家,指导母亲们帮助女儿在月经一事上适应社会,保持整洁和低调。月经初潮实际上从成年女性的标志变成了“卫生危机”。

Even now, American girls are socialized to see menstruation, and more generally, their bodies, as problems to be solved through use of the “right” products. Today, we are exporting this view around the world.

即使是现在,美国女孩也被社会化了,她们将月经以及她们的身体视为需要通过使用“正确”产品来解决的问题。如今,我们在向全世界输出这种观点。

The outsize attention paid to products reduces menstruation to a hygiene issue when it should be much more. The monthly shedding of the uterine lining is part of a cycle that lasts, on average, for 40 years. It is a vital marker of health and a pivotal developmental milestone for half the world’s population.

对产品的过度关注将月经简化为卫生问题,而实际上,它包含很多内容。子宫内膜每月一次的脱落是平均持续40年的一个周期的一部分。它是健康的重要标志,也是世界上半数人口的关键发育里程碑。

Menarche should be a prime opportunity to begin a girl’s lifelong authentic engagement with her body. Instead, we hand her a pad and teach her to put it up her sleeve when she goes to the bathroom.

月经初潮应该是女孩子开始与自己身体的终生真正接触的最佳机会。可是,我们递给她一块卫生巾,教她在去洗手间时把它藏在袖子里。

Many of the people doing work on menstrual health initiatives know that distributing products is not a silver bullet. Indeed, some pair distribution with education. A few also push for infrastructure improvements and policy change. But as people working in the field have told me, the reality is that providing pads is easier than trying to change ingrained cultural habits. It’s also readily measurable: It’s easy to note the number of pads that have been handed out in a month. It’s much harder to provide similar metrics for improved knowledge and education levels.

许多从事经期保健工作的人都知道,分发产品不是灵丹妙药。有些项目确实会在分发过程中辅以教育。还有一些会推动基础设施的改善和政策的改变。但正如实地工作者对我说的那样,事实上,提供卫生巾比试图改变根深蒂固的文化习惯要容易得多。它也容易衡量:一个月发了多少卫生巾很好算。但以类似的方式算出知识和教育水平提高了多少就要难得多。

We must resist the well-meaning impulse to improve the lives of menstruating girls through consumption. The greater need is for people to understand that periods aren’t something shameful and best kept hidden. When menstruation is treated as normal, it becomes more than a nuisance, a punch line or a weapon wielded to keep women in their place.

我们必须抵制通过消费来改善经期女孩生活的善意冲动。更需要做的事情是让人们明白,月经不是什么可耻的事,不需要遮遮掩掩。如果月经被视为正常的事,那么它就不再只是一件麻烦事,一句打趣的话,也不再是一种让女性谨守本分的武器。

Our aim must be to transform the revulsion into respect, to shift from “eww” to “oh.” We need to redirect resources toward promoting innovative, inclusive and culturally sensitive community-based education about the menstrual cycle. And the audience must be not only girls, but also everyone surrounding them — boys, parents, teachers, religious leaders and health professionals.

我们的目标应该是把厌恶转化为尊重,从“咦”变成“哦”。我们需要将资源用于促进的创新、包容、考虑文化敏感性且基于社区的月经周期教育。受众不应该只有女孩,还应该包括她周围所有的人——男孩、家长、教师、宗教领袖和健康专业人士。

To be clear, I am not denying that women need something to bleed on. Of course we do. Nor I am suggesting that women should be denied access to new methods of handling menstruation better suited to their needs.

需要澄清的是,我并不否认女性需要吸收经血的东西。我们当然需要。我也不是建议女性拒绝接受更适合自己的处理经血的新方法。

But menstrual activism won’t be meaningful if it is reduced to Western-style “better living through more consumption.” After all, periods remain taboo in high-income countries where commercial products have been the norm for decades. Challenging the social stigma and disgust directed at the female body must be our main mission — in the developing world and everywhere else.

但是,如果月经倡议活动简化为西式的“通过更多的消费实现更好的生活”,那么它就失去了意义。毕竟,在数十年来商品已成为常态的高收入国家里,月经依然是禁忌。挑战社会对女性身体的耻辱感及厌恶必须是我们的主要使命——在发展中国家,以及其他任何地方。

If this moment is going to grow into a movement, it must do more than move products. It must move minds.

如果此刻会演变成一场运动,那么我们应该做的不仅是运送产品,而应该是改变思想。

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