HIV/AIDS and Subaltern Autonomous Rationality: A Call to Re-Center Health Communication in Marginalized Sex Worker Spaces

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Book Chapter

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HIV/AIDS, Sex Work, Subaltern, Health Communication

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Sex workers in India constitute a marginalized population. They are considered at high risk of HIV/AIDS and are stigmatized for “selling sex” in a culture that generally censures sex outside marriage. HIV/AIDS initiatives targeted at this population have mostly adhered to promoting condom use, increasing awareness, and encouraging blood tests to screen for HIV/AIDS. Missing from this discourse are voices of sex workers and their autonomous consciousness. Based on an analysis of interview data from an eight-week field project, this paper seeks to centralize sex worker subaltern rationality in a call to reframe expert-led HIV/AIDS communication efforts that cater to sex worker communities.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Communication Monographs, v. 78, issue 3, p. 391-408