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Edited by Alice Welbourn
with Joanna Hoare
Copyright Date: 2008
Published by: Oxfam GB
Pages: 160
Stable URL:
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  • Book Info
    HIV and AIDS
    Book Description:

    This book explores the links between HIV, AIDS, gender inequality, and poverty with accounts of successful interventions, recording experience, describing good practice, and sharing information about resources. It is essential reading for development practitioners and policy makers involved in responding to the HIV and AIDS crisis.

    eISBN: 978-0-85598-767-1
    Subjects: Sociology
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Table of Contents

Export Selected Citations
  1. Front Matter (pp. ii-viii)
  2. Table of Contents (pp. ix-xii)
  3. Introduction (pp. xiii-xxvi)
    Alice Welbourn

    HIV (the Human Immunodeficiency Virus) and AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome; the syndrome that can develop as a result of the virus’ effects on the body¹) have now been around for 25 years. This is almost the same number of years as the current life expectancy in some of the countries where there is the highest prevalence of HIV. The effect of AIDS has reduced life expectancy in these countries to as little as 33 years (UNICEF 2005).² All countries in the world have been affected by HIV and AIDS in some way.

    As a biological virus, HIV is so...

  4. Part I: Exploring the root causes of HIV
    • 1 HIV/AIDS, globalisation, and the international women’s movement (pp. 3-8)
      Sisonke Msimang

      Globalisation has been described as ‘the drive towards an economic system dominated by supranational trade and banking institutions that are not accountable to democratic processes or national governments’ (Globalisation Guide, It is characterised by an increase in cross-border economic, social, and technological exchange under conditions of (extreme) capitalism. As human bodies move across borders in search of new economic and educational opportunities, or in search of lives free from political conflict and violence, they bring with them dreams and aspirations. Sometimes, they carry the virus that causes AIDS, and often, they meet the virus at their destinations.

      As corporations...

    • 2 Challenges and opportunities for promoting the girl child’s rights in the face of HIV/AIDS (pp. 9-19)
      Mildred Tambudzai Mushunje

      The nature and scope of childhood has dramatically changed in the context of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. A large proportion of children in Zimbabwe today do not experience true nurturing in their childhood. Their childhood is taking place against a backdrop of unprecedented political, economic, cultural, and social changes. Worst of all, the backdrop includes HIV/AIDS, the impact of which manifests itself in the breakdown of extended family safety nets, orphans’ consequent loss of a protective family environment, and widespread child-headed households.

      UNAIDSet al. (2004) estimates that globally, close to three million children under the age of 15 years have...

    • 3 ‘I’m too young to die’: HIV, masculinity, danger, and desire in urban South Africa (pp. 20-31)
      Shannon Walsh and Claudia Mitchell

      These are the words of KK, an AIDS activist and former gang member in Khayelitsha, South Africa, talking in a videotaped interview that we shot forFire and Hope, a documentary on youth activism. KK reveals on tape that life for him and others like him is ‘risky business’. In the video, he pauses as he says this. It is this pause – his unspoken words – that provides a chilling reminder of the danger that is part of an everyday reality for many young men. As we explore here, it is a danger that sits alongside, and intersects with,...

    • 4 A gendered response to HIV/AIDS in South Asia and the Pacific: insights from the pandemic in Africa (pp. 32-43)
      Madhu Bala Nath

      Currently, one in every five people newly infected with HIV worldwide lives in the Asia and Pacific region. According to the 2004 UNAIDS report on HIV, in all, over 8 million people were living with the virus in the region at the end of 2003 as compared to 42 million across the globe. More than a quarter – 2.6 million – are young people aged between 15 and 24. The year 2003 also saw half a million deaths due to AIDS in the Asia and Pacific region, as against 3 million deaths globally. An addition of 1 million new infections...

    • 5 Safe motherhood in the time of AIDS: the illusion of reproductive ‘choice’ (pp. 44-58)
      Carolyn Baylies

      The comments above reflect women’s anxieties about child-bearing when the prevalence of HIV infection is high and suspicions are harboured about partners’ sexual behaviour. They were collected in a study carried out in Zambia in 1995, on the impact of AIDS on households in Chipapa, south of Lusaka, and Minga, in the country’s Eastern Province.¹

      Given the importance of child-bearing in many societies, and their own desire for children, women often face a stark dilemma. As Marge Berer and Sunanda Ray put it, ‘Practising safer sex and trying to get pregnant are not possible at the same time, at least...

  5. Part II: Rethinking ‘our’ attitudes to ‘others” realities
    • 6 Diversifying gender: male to female transgender identities and HIV/AIDS programming in Phnom Penh, Cambodia (pp. 61-74)
      Barbara Earth

      Cambodia’s approach to HIV prevention is a good example of what is known as the ‘behaviour change’ model. Measures have overwhelmingly focused on increasing condom use: awareness-raising about condoms, increasing access to condoms, enacting laws that require 100 per cent condom use in sex establishments, training women sex workers to use condoms, and ensuring brothel owners’ and police support. The emphasis on condom use has been reinforced through various media, including television, radio, newspapers, billboards, and other print media. Though these interventions have reduced the total number of infections, they have focused only on heterosexuals. Sexual minorities have not been...

    • 7 Young men and HIV (pp. 75-91)
      Doortje Braeken, Raoul Fransen and Tim Shand

      The face of HIV is increasingly young. Currently, more than 33 million people are living with HIV worldwide (UNAIDS 2007) and almost a quarter of this group are under the age of 25 (UNAIDS 2004a). Young people (aged 15–24) now account for 50 per cent of new HIV infections (WHO 2006). Although young men account for a significant number of those living with HIV, the international response to date has placed greater emphasis on the vulnerability of young women and girls. While this approach remains necessary, particularly in areas such as sub-Saharan Africa where more than 75 per cent...

    • 8 HIV-positive African women surviving in London: report of a qualitative study (pp. 92-102)
      Lesley Doyal and Jane Anderson

      In sub-Saharan Africa, around 60 per cent of people infected with HIV are female (UNAIDS and WHO 2004). In other parts of the world, women from African countries also carry a heavy burden of HIV infection. In the UK, for instance, around 75 per cent of all women diagnosed as HIV-positive in 2003 came from Africa (UK Health Protection Agency, Centre for Infection 2004). Yet we know very little about these women’s circumstances, or their needs. This article reports on a study exploring the daily lives of HIV-positive African women receiving medical care in London. It examines the complex choices...

  6. Part III: Practical multiple approaches
    • 9 Mitigating impacts of HIV/AIDS on rural livelihoods: NGO experiences in sub-Saharan Africa (pp. 105-122)
      Joanna White and John Morton

      In sub-Saharan Africa, around 26.6 million people are believed to be living with HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS/WHO 2003), while the estimated number of children orphaned in the region as a result of the epidemic stands at around 11 million (UNAIDS 2002). The aggregate impacts of AIDS are increasingly visible, and include dramatic reductions in life expectancy, the loss of adult workers in every sector, and a striking increase in the number of orphans and other vulnerable children (UNICEF 2002).

      At household and community levels, the increasing ill-health and mortality of large numbers of ‘prime-age’ adults who had played a fundamental role in...

    • 10 Danger and opportunity: responding to HIV with vision (pp. 123-136)
      Kate Butcher and Alice Welbourn

      Among trainers in participatory approaches to development, there is a legendary indigenous language which uses one character to represent the concepts of both ‘danger’ and ‘opportunity’. This symbol, which simultaneously represents two very different attitudes to a situation, reminds us of different ways in which people have responded to HIV/AIDS. HIV has now been an issue of major concern for at least 20 years and continues to pose immense challenges, which humanity has been unable to meet. Yet many individuals and groups who are infected with HIV, or touched in other ways, have risen to its challenge. One key example...

    • 11 ‘Mainstreaming’ HIV in Papua New Guinea: putting gender equity first (pp. 137-146)
      Janet Seeley and Kate Butcher

      The travel guide books (Lonely Planet 2005) talk of Papua New Guinea (PNG) as ‘a raw land, remarkably untamed and as variegated as swamp and jagged limestone’ and warn the traveller about crime, banditry, and violence. The warnings to the traveller are not misplaced, yet it is not just the traveller who needs to take care: violence is a reality with which many Papua New Guineans live all the time (Windybank and Manning 2003). Seventy per cent of women have experienced domestic violence, according to a 1998 World Bank study (Brouweret al. 1998). Such levels of violence are unacceptable...

  7. Part IV: Positive agency and action
    • 12 Advocacy training by the International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS (pp. 149-161)
      The International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS

      The International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS (ICW) is the only international network of HIV-positive women. Our members, in 134 countries, work with local, national, and international networks, organisations, and groups supporting and campaigning for the rights of HIV-positive women and men.

      ICW was established in 1992 in response to the desperate lack of support, information, and services available worldwide to women living with HIV, and to enable these women to influence and contribute to official policy development. HIV-positive women from around the world attended the eighth International Conference on AIDS, held in Amsterdam in July 1992, where they...

  8. Conclusion (pp. 162-175)
    Alice Welbourn

    This collection has highlighted the immense global, psychosocial, economic, legal, and political issues facing us today in relation to the spread of HIV and AIDS. It has focused in particular on the gender dimension to this pandemic, the dimension which arguably is the one least recognised by the world’s leaders. In this conclusion I seek to look beyond the issues covered in this collection, to touch on some of the other current and future challenges involved in responding to HIV and AIDS in an effective and gender-sensitive way. Of course, this conclusion cannot covereverychallenge that has not been...

  9. Resources (pp. 176-199)
  10. Index (pp. 200-208)