Beliefs and practices in reproductive health
PC Joshi (University of Delhi)
Moirangthem Cha Arunkumar (Manipur University)
Paper short abstract:
This paper will highlight the cultural beliefs and practices during menstruation, sexual behaviour, conception, pregnancy and childbirth.
Paper long abstract:
This is an ethnographic study of a community called Andro in Manipur, a state in the north eastern region of India. Women in Andro have their own ethno anatomy and ethno physiology and it succinctly differ from the bio medically derived anatomical models both spatially and functionally. Women describe their body parts as they feel and experience them. Moreover they also visualize some of the body parts while dissecting household animals for food while talking with peers and older female relatives. It also highlights the cultural beliefs and practices during menstruation, sexual behaviour, conception, pregnancy and childbirth. The exploration of Andro women's cultural construction of body and knowledge about women's beliefs about a variety of physiological processes: menstruation, conception, sexual behaviour and childbirth, and practices associated with these beliefs can provide insight into potential determinants of gynaecological morbidity and can be an asset in improving health care and responsive to the felt needs of the service user.
Cross-cultural perspectives on pregnancy and childbirth: encounters with unknowns at the natal/postnatal juncture