SAHARA J : journal of Social Aspects of HIV/AIDS Research Alliance 14(1) 185-192 doi 10.1080/17290376.2017.1394908
When human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) are framed within an intersectional approach, they have the potential to transform understandings of social justice within the curriculum and education policy and practice in general. Yet, this transformative potential is often hampered by official narratives that fail to position HIV and AIDS as an integral component of overlapping systems of oppression, domination and discrimination. This article explores how official HIV and AIDS narratives tend to promote systemic injustice and inequality within education policy and practice in both Scotland and Zimbabwe, despite their good intents. We frame our argument within a transformative education discourse which seeks to create participatory and emancipatory HIV-related messages at school, tertiary and community levels. Using a narrative enquiry design, a Foucauldian theoretical lens was used to analyse the narratives derived from key informant responses, supplemented by analysis of key documents that deal with HIV and AIDS in both Scotland and Zimbabwe. Four broad narratives emerged: the ‘Gay’ Narrative; the Migration Narrative; the Conspiracy Narrative; and the Religious Narrative. We discuss how each of these narratives entrench stigma across both developed and developing world contexts, and propose how a more intersectional interpretation would contribute to a deeper and less stigmatizing understanding of HIV, thus offering more useful insights into related policy and educational practices. This article will thus contribute to the growing body of intersectional HIV and AIDS knowledge that is relevant for schools, teacher education, public health and community settings, not only in the countries studied, but the world over.