Menstruation: Lore and Experience of Four Generations
This paper aims at questioning that how do women from different generations experience menstruation and share their lore with other women and, convey their experience of menstruation to other women. Having based on the interviews conducted with four members of a family, i.e. with great-grandmother, grandmother, mother and daughter, the paper focuses on the symbolic meaning and lore of menstruation, the material objects and, some practices of menstruation as expressions of menstruation experience. Conveying experience and sharing lore is restricted only between two generations, between mother and daughter, but living in a male dominated culture makes all experiences similar. At the same time, their experience and lore differs because of some factors such as education, urbanization and modernization. The menstruation etiquette is based on the understanding that the male body is the normal body and menstruating body shows a kind of anomaly. Thus, with some differences, all family members share the understanding of the menstruation etiquette that requires concealment of and silence on menstruation.
Akşit, E.E. & Cantek Şenol, F. (2011). Feminist Yöntem ve Kadın Çalışmalarına İlişkin Bazı Sorular, Sorunlar. İçinde, Sancar S. (Ed), Birkaç Arpa Boyu…21. Yüzyıla Girerken Türkiye’de Feminist Çalışmalar Prof. Dr. Nermin Abadan Unat’a Armağan (2. Cilt). İstanbul: Koç Üniversitesi Yayınları:535-561.
Alcoff, L.M. (2000). Phenomenology, Post-Structuralism, And Feminist Theory On The Concept of Experience. İçinde, L. Fisher, L. Embree (Eds.), Feminist Phenomenology. Springer Science Business Media:39-56.
Alwin, D.F. & McCammon, R.J. (2007). Rethinking Generation. Research in Human Development, 4(3-4):219-237.
Bailey, C.A. (1993). Equality With Difference: On Androcentrism and Menstruation, Teaching Sociology, 21(2):121-129.
Beauvoir de S. (1993). Kadın “İkinci Cins” Genç Kızlık Çağı (Çev. Onaran B.). İstanbul: Payel Yayınevi.
Brantelid, I.E., Nilver, H. & Alehagen, S. (2014). Menstruating During a Lifespan: A Qualitative Study of Women’s Experiences. Health Care For Women International, 35:600-616.
Britton, C.J. (1996). Learning About “The Curse” An Anthropological Perspective on Experiences of Menstruation. Women’s Studies International Forum, 19(6): 645-653.
Buckley, T. & Gottlieb, A. (1988). A Critical Appraisal of Theories of Menstrual Symbolism. İçinde, Buckley T. & Gottlieb A. (Eds.), Blood Magic The Anthropology of Menstruation. Berkeley, Los Angeles, London: University of California Press:1-55.
Buritica Alzate, J. (2013). The Menstrual Closet: Analysis of the Representation of Menstruation in Japanese and Colombian Advertisements for Feminine Hygiene Products. IUC Comparative Culture, 45:29-59.
Christoforou, A. (2018). Womanhood, Reproduction, and Pollution Greek Cypriot Women’s Accounts of Menstruation, Women’s Studies International Forum, 68:47-54.
Costos, D., Ackerman, R. & Paradis, L. (2002). Recollection of Menarche: Communication Between Mothers and Daughters Regarding Menstruation. Sex Roles, 46 (1/2): 49-59.
Çevirme S.A., Çevirme, H., Karaoğlu, L., Uğurlu, N., Korkmaz, Y. (2010). The Perception of Menarche and Menstruation Among Turkish Married Women: Attitudes, Experiences and Behaviours. Social Behaviour and Personality, 38(3):381-394.
Dilthey, W. (1989). Selected Works (Vol.I) Introduction to the Human Sciences. Makkreel R.A. & Rodi F. (Eds.). Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton Press.
Dikmen-Özarslan, A. (2004). Kırmızı Kar Toplumsal ve Kültürel Açıdan Ayhali. İstanbul: Bağlam Yayıncılık.
Douglas, M. (2005). Saflık ve Tehlike Kirlilik ve Tabu Kavramlarının Bir Çözümlemesi. (E.Ayhan çev.). İstanbul: Metis Yayınevi.
Fuss, D. (1989). Essentially Speaking Feminism, Nature & Difference. London, New York: Routledge.
Harding S. & Hintikka M. B. (2004). Introduction. Discovering Reality Feminist Perspectives on Epistemology, Metaphysics, Methodology and Philosophy of Science. İçinde, Harding S. & Hintikka M.B. (Eds.). New York, Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers:ix-xix.
Houppert, K. (2004). Lanet Son Tabuyla Yüzleşme: Adet Kanaması. İstanbul: Ayrıntı Yayınları.
Hufnagel Lewin, G. (2012). The History of Women’s Menstruation From Ancient Greece to the Twenty-First Century Psychological, Social, Medical, Religious and Educational Issues. New York: The Edwin Mellen Press.
Kelland, L., Pophitis, S. & Maclead, C. (2017). A Contemporary Phenomenology of Menstruation Understanding the Body in Situation in Public Health Interventions to Adress Menstruation Related Challenges. Women’s Studies International Forum, 63:33-41.
Kümbetoğlu, B. (2012). Sosyolojide ve Antropolojide Niteliksel Yöntem ve Araştırma. İstanbul: Bağlam Yayıncılık.
Lawrence, L.D. (1982). Reconsidering the Menstrual Taboo: A Portuquese Case. Anthropological Quarterly, 55:84-98.
Laws, S. (2001). Issues of Blood: The Politics of Menstruation. Palgrave Macmillan.
Lee, J. (2009). Bodies at Menarche: Stories of Shame, Concealment and Sexual Maturation. Sex Roles, 60:615-627.
Martin, E. (2001). The Woman in the Body a Cultural Analysis of Reproduction. Boston: Beacon Press.
Marvan, M.L., Molma-Abolnik, M. (2012). Mexian Adolescents’ Experience of Menarche and Attitudes toward Menstruation: Role of Communication Between Mothers and Daughters. Journal of Pediatric and Adolescant Gynecology, 25: 358-363.
Mondragon, N.I., Txertudi, M. B. (2019). Understanding Menstruation: Influence of Gender and Ideological Factors A Study of Young People’s Social Representation, Feminism & Psychology, 0 (0): 1-7.
Newton, L.V. (2006). Everyday Discourses of Menstruation Cultural and Social Perspectives. London: Palgrave MacMillan UK.
Oksala, J. (2014). In Defense of Experience. Hypatia, 29(2): 388-403.
Ramazanoğlu, C. & Holland, J. (2002). Feminist Methodology Challenges and Choices. London, Thousand Oaks, New Delhi: Sage.
Scott, J.W. (1992). Experience. İçinde, Butler J. & Scott J.W. (Eds.). Feminist Theorize the Political. London, New York: Routledge:22-40.
Smith, D.E. (2005). Institutional Ethnography A Sociology For People. Lanham, New York, Toronto, Oxford: Altamira Press.
Szarewski, A., Stengling von A. & Rybowski, A. (2012). Women’s Attitude Towards Monthly Bleeding Results of Global Population Based Survey. The European Journal of Contraception & Reproductive Health Care, 17(4): 270-283.
Thuren, M.B. (1994). “Opening Door and Getting Rid Of Shame” Experiences of First Menstruation in Valencia, Spain. Women’s Studies International Forum, 17 (2/3): 217-228.
Uskul, A.K. (2004). Women’s Menarche Stories From a Multi-cultural Sample. Social Science & Medicine, 54: 667-679.
Salman Yıkmış, M. (2019). Deneyimi Aktarmak ve Deneyimi Bilmek. İçinde, Bakioğlu A. (Ed.), IX. Ulusal Sosyoloji Kongresi Toplum 4.0 Bildiriler Kitabı. Ankara: Sosyoloji Derneği Yayınları:757-766.
Young, M.I. (2005). On Female Body Experience “Throwing Like a Girl” and Other Essays. Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication, with the work [6 months] after publication simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access)