The practice is most entrenched in the country's south, where Mwase's Golden Village is located. Mwase was just 10 when she was led, along with about a dozen other girls, to remote huts outside her village during winter vacation from school in August. The girls were accompanied by older women from their village in Chiradzulu district, near the border with Mozambique. According to Mwase, most of the two weeks she spent at the initiation camp were dedicated to learning how to engage in sexual acts. She had been excited for this time with friends away from home, but that feeling quickly gave way to dread as she learned the true purpose of initiation. The man should be on top of you and you should be dancing for him, making him happy. The anamkungwi told the girls to lie on top of one another and get a feel for the various positions described to them. This will mark them for life, and they will be ostracized if they don't complete the custom as their mothers and grandmothers did before them. These guardians often force their daughters to go through with the ritual for fear of breaking with tradition. Initiation is a centuries-old practice in the region, according to Harriet Chanza of the World Health Organization.
The Atlantic Crossword
A deeper look into the different cultures of the African continent, its food, people, music, art, language and more. Every year thousands of young women around South Africa are tested to find out if they are still virgins — someone who has not had sex. Some respect this as a cultural practice, others find it degrading. Ukuhlolwa kwezintombi has been historically regarded as a vital social tool to bring pride to the virgin girl, the parents and the community as a whole. The big motive was to receive the full lobola especially inkomo kamama the eleventh cow. Urbanisation, industrialisation, acculturation, education and religious beliefs led ukuhlolwa kwezintombi to its near demise in twenty years ago. It is met with a variety of views and emotions with some considering it as valuable while others consider it outdated and irrelevant. Virginity testing is regarded as a custom of cultural value and the country is in the process of African Renaissance. In South Africa was set to ban the age-old Zulu custom of virginity testing on young girls even though traditionalists have vowed to disregard the new measure.
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While practices like the killing of twins in Nigeria are no longer as common as they used to be, certain rituals have refused to go away. This popular custom is practised in rural Malawi, Zambia, Kenya, and other African countries. Locally referred to as "Kusasa Fumbi," it involves a woman having unprotected sex with a man called a "hyena. In an attempt to foster relationships and approval, a man gives his wife over to his guest for the night while he sleeps in another room or outside if there is no space.
Young virgins have been performing the Zulu Royal Reed Dance for centuries wearing nothing but beads and short fringed skirts. But now King Goodwill Zwelithini has told the girls to put on sarongs or traditional undergarments called umuntsha to cover their buttocks. And the King added: "There are times when maidens have to sing and dance and we end up seeing certain private body parts that we're not supposed to see. Locals are said to be fed up of "lascivious" male tourists who "act like paparazzi" and "zoom in on bare flesh with their hi-tech cameras. Zulus say their traditional ceremony is being sullied because of the wrong sort of attention from visitors.