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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Narratives of Sexual Abstinence: A Qualitative Study of Female Adolescents in a Cape Town Community
Author:Kahn, LaurenISNI
Year:2006
Periodical:Social Dynamics
Volume:32
Issue:1
Pages:75-101
Language:English
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:sexuality
girls
Coloureds
urban environment
Women's Issues
Urbanization and Migration
Health and Nutrition
Cultural Roles
Health, Nutrition, and Medicine
urbanization
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/02533950608628720
Abstract:The paper draws upon critical health psychology to explore decisionmaking around sexual abstinence among adolescent girls in Ocean View, a poor, 'coloured' neighbourhood in Cape Town, South Africa. These girls 'deviate' from the norm in that they have chosen sexual abstinence in a context characterized by high levels of adolescent promiscuity. Their sexual decisionmaking is found to be a means whereby the participants attempt to challenge destructive sexual norms operating within their community. Abstinence might be seen as part of a broader strategy of making and taking opportunities to escape from the destructive cycles of life in Ocean View, and is bound up in both instrumental and symbolic concerns. This paper finds that sexual decisionmaking is informed more by the psychosocial and material context than by cognitive factors; in this sense, HIV/AIDS interventions based upon educating adolescents about sexual health are unlikely to have a significant effect upon sexual decisionmaking and behaviour. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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