Fran Hosken

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Fran Hosken ca. 1950

Fran P. Hosken (1920 – 2 February 2006) was an American writer, feminist, and social activist. She founded the Women's International Network in 1975, and published a quarterly journal on women's health issues that became known, in particular, for its research into female genital mutilation (FGM).[1] Her report on FGM, The Hosken Report: Genital and Sexual Mutilation of Females (1979), was influential in persuading the international community, including the World Health Organization, to make efforts to end the practice.


Hosken was born as Franziska Porges in Vienna, Austria, where her father was a physician, and emigrated with her family to the United States in 1938. She attended Smith College, and in 1944 obtained a master's degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Design, one of the first women to do so. She joined the Coast Guard during the Second World War, working in communications. She married James Hosken in 1947. They had three children, and divorced in 1962.[1]

Selected works[edit]

  • The Language of Cities: A Visual Introduction to the Form and Function of the City. Schenkman Pub. Co, 1972.
  • Urban development and Housing in Africa. Hosken, 1973.
  • The Kathmandu Valley Towns: A Record of Life and Change in Nepal. Weatherhill, 1974.
  • The Hosken Report: Genital and Sexual Mutilation of Females. Women's International Network News, 1979.
  • Female Sexual Mutilations: The facts and Proposals for Action. Women's International Network News, 1980.
  • "Towards a Definition of Women's Rights," Human Rights Quarterly, vol 3, issue 2, May 1981.
  • The Childbirth Picture Book: A Picture Story of Reproduction from a Woman's View. Women's International Network News, 1989.
  • Stop Female Genital Mutilation. Women's International Network News, 1995.


  1. ^ a b Kahn, Joseph P. "Fran P. Hosken, 86; activist for women's issues globally", The Boston Globe, 12 February 2006.

Further reading[edit]

  • Shell-Duncan, Bettina and Ylva Hernlund. "The Hosken Report", Female "Circumcision" in Africa: Culture, Controversy, and Change. Lynne Rienner, 2000.

External links[edit]