Home > Research > AIDS and Society Research Unit > Publications > Publications All > Pub home > Is it all chaos, loss and disruption? The narratives of poor, HIV-infected South African women

Is it all chaos, loss and disruption? The narratives of poor, HIV-infected South African women

Year: 2008
Working paper number: 224
Author: Brandt, René
Unit: ASRU
Abstract:

The purpose of this article is to employ a qualitative research approach to explore whether the lives of poor HIV-infected South African women are predominated by chaos, loss and disruption. Five women were each interviewed three times over a six-month period. Data was analyzed using a narrative lens as well as the theory of illness narratives. The narratives revealed that some disruption was associated with women's initial diagnoses. However, they were typically not preoccupied with HIV unless they were actively ill and not receiving antiretroviral therapy, and even for these women, wellbeing shifted over time. Moreover, women had denial-based coping strategies that kept HIV and chaos marginalized. Competing narratives concerned with poverty were typically dominant and served as a constant through which women's experiences were filtered. The case studies suggest that both mental health services and poverty alleviation are important components of appropriate health care for poor HIV-infected women.


Publication file: WP224.pdf
TOP