Original Research

Behaviours of traditional male circumcision initiates of Cala and Mdantsane, South Africa

Aphiwe Mpateni, Simon Murote Kang’ethe
Inkanyiso | Vol 14, No 1 | a17 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ink.v14i1.17 | © 2022 Aphiwe Mpateni, Simon Murote Kang’ethe | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 08 December 2022 | Published: 21 December 2022

About the author(s)

Aphiwe Mpateni, Department of Social Work/Social Development, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, University of Fort Hare, East London, South Africa
Simon Murote Kang’ethe, Department of Social Work and Psychology, Faculty of Humanities, Social Science and Law, Walter Sisulu University, Mthatha, South Africa


This article focuses on the exploration of behavioural deficits that are manifested by the traditional male circumcision (TMC) initiates of the contemporary epoch. A qualitative research approach amid an exploratory and descriptive design followed by interpretivism paradigm was applied. A purposive sampling technique of non-probability sampling method was used. The in-depth interviews and focus group discussions were used as data collection methods. Cala and Mdantsane were selected as research domains because of their involvement in the practice of TMC. Thematic analysis effected through coding was used to analyse data. The findings revealed that contemporary TMC initiates embrace negative teachings in the initiation school that fails to meet societal moral and ethical expectations, such as the preponderance of violence and abuse of alcohol. It also showed non-compliance to the moral code and cultural goalposts by the contemporary TMC initiates. Furthermore, this study recommends for policies to ensure that the rite achieves its sociocultural objective amid the training of traditional nurses and surgeons to astutely manage the rite.


morals; behaviour; culture; traditional male circumcision (TMC); a rite of passage.

JEL Codes

A13: Relation of Economics to Social Values; A21: Pre-college

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 3: Good health and well-being


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