Arranging marriage; Negotiating risk: Genetics and society in Qatar

Susie Kilshaw, Tasneem Al Raisi, Fouad AlShaban

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)


This paper considers how the globalized discourse of genetic risk in cousin marriage is shaped, informed and taken up in local moral worlds within the context of Qatar. This paper investigates the way Qataris are negotiating the discourse on genetics and risk. It is based on data from ongoing ethnographic research in Qatar and contributes to anthropological knowledge about this understudied country. Participants were ambivalent about genetic risks and often pointed to other theories of causation in relation to illness and disability. The discourse on genetic risk associated with marrying in the family was familiar, but for some participants the benefits of close marriage outweighed potential risks. Furthermore, the introduction of mandatory pre-marital screening gave participants confidence that risks were monitored and minimized.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)98-113
Number of pages16
JournalAnthropology and Medicine
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 4 May 2015



  • beliefs
  • biomedicine
  • genetics
  • medical anthropology
  • Qatar

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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