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A Cultural - spatial analysis of excreting, recirculation of human excreta and health - The case of North West Frontier Province, Pakistan
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Department of Water and Environmental Studies. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
COMSATS University Abbottabad, Pakistan.
2011 (English)In: Health and Place, ISSN 1353-8292, Vol. 17, no 1, 57-66 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The sanitation issue is entering the development discussion and the UN proclaimed 2008 the year of sanitation. The study aims to understand the cultural–spatial dimension among Muslim communities of excreting and recirculating human excreta in North West Frontier Province in Pakistan. Information on local perceptions and cultural understanding was collected through interviews, group discussions and observations in four selected villages. The study identifies a diversity of excreting practices among age groups and sexes, and varied adherence to expressed cultural norms. Interviewees express less resentment towards urine compared to faeces, however, their negative attitude subsides when faecal matter is mixed with water since this changes appearance, odour—and cultural meaning. Religious dictums about excreta and sewage accommodate contradicting routine behaviours to cater for needs of residents and farmers. For example, when mothers pray wearing soiled clothing, and in the use of wastewater as fertiliser for food production. The excreta-related practices are compatible with good hygienic behaviour as outlined by WHO Guidelines, except for children who are allowed to defecate anywhere.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier , 2011. Vol. 17, no 1, 57-66 p.
Keyword [en]
Excreting, Recirculation of human waste, perceptions
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-65804DOI: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2010.08.012ISI: 000288776500008OAI: diva2:399105
Available from: 2011-02-24 Created: 2011-02-21 Last updated: 2011-04-26Bibliographically approved

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Drangert, Jan-Olof
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Department of Water and Environmental StudiesFaculty of Arts and Sciences
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