Notebooks

## Menstruation

17 Aug 1995 19:07

Superstitions. Theodore Sturgeon's story. Selective rehabilitation of some superstitions by some feminists. Where did I read about a tribe (in New Guinea?) whose men cut their genitals so they, too, can menstruate''? Wherever it was, the same book suggested that medicinal bleeding had the same origin, that it was a sort of artificial menstruation.

Sturgeon's story is Some of Your Blood. The library doesn't have it, and nor do the used bookstores.

My question, What did women do before tampons?'' has been answered by a number of people thus: rags.'' This more than anything increases my admiration for Connie Willis's Even the Queen'' (in Impossible Things), which originally prompted this entry. Let us now praise unknown women, and our mothers who begat us.