Problematising the HIV/AIDS Epidemic in South Africa: Challenges for the Humanities

By Judith Frances Head.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In this paper I shall discuss my experience of convening a Masters programme in HIV/AIDS and Society. There are few, if any, courses in South Africa that focus on HIV/AIDS from a multidisciplinary perspective. Yet this is critically important. HIV/AIDS knows no disciplinary boundaries. Contributing to effective policy, which is part of the university’s mission, means interrogating contemporary practice and conventional wisdom. This involves looking at old questions from new angles and drawing on diverse understandings as well as past experience to explore new issues. This process of critical reflection, informed by understandings from different disciplines, challenges some of the assumptions of the social sciences themselves.

Keywords: HIV/AIDS

The International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 6, Issue 12, pp.117-126. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 616.894KB).

Dr. Judith Frances Head

Senior Lecturer, Department of Sociology, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa

My interests include the Sociology of HIV/AIDS, patterns of morbidity and mortality and their relationship to poverty and inequality; the implications of collecting of health statistics by racial or social class categories, the social and historical context of TB and the impact of colonial racial ideologies on contemporary understandings of HIV and AIDS.


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