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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Prostitution in Malawi and the HIV/AIDS Risk
Author:Forster, Peter G.ISNI
Periodical:Nordic Journal of African Studies
Geographic term:Malawi
Women's Issues
Labor and Employment
Health, Nutrition, and Medicine
External link:https://www.njas.fi/njas/article/view/625/448
Abstract:Prostitution is not always easy to define, especially on a cross-cultural basis. In the African context, there can be a continuum between offering gifts for sexual services and more commercially-oriented sex work. It can form an element of a cash nexus between men and women, in a situation where those absorbed into wage labour have been overwhelmingly male. A study of gossip and off-the-cuff remarks concerning prostitution in the Zomba district, Malawi, is reported. The research was conducted in 1993, with some updating to 1995. A link between geographical movement by wealthier males and casual sexual activity is observed, with payment a form of male distribution of largesse to women. Commercial prostitutes ('bar girls') were seen also to recognize the risk of AIDS, but were found to feel there was no alternative, that they had AIDS anyway, or that mortality was decided simply by fate. Some clients used condoms but others refused, and even some prostitutes would not use them. Explanation of prostitutes' behaviour can be seen as mainly economic, but considerable male patronage despite known risks needs also to be recognized. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum.