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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Medicines of hope? The tough decision for anti-retroviral use for HIV in Zanzibar, Tanzania
Author:Beckmann, Nadine
Periodical:Journal of Eastern African Studies (ISSN 1753-1063)
Geographic term:Zanzibar
medicinal drugs
social relations
health care
Abstract:The provision of free anti-retroviral treatment for AIDS in Zanzibar since March 2005 is the result of enormous struggles at a global scale and has provided immense relief for sufferers. At the same time, the new 'medicines of hope', as they quickly became known, have produced new uncertainties about how best to respond to HIV/AIDS, both for the infected individual and for the society at large. ART programmes make possible a biologized, pharmaceutical life. Drawing on three case studies of women with AIDS this paper shows how HIV-positive people struggle to make decisions in an environment characterized by deep uncertainties about the nature and causes of HIV/AIDS in particular, and about the continuity of Zanzibari society in general. It argues that health interventions cannot be orientated to 'life itself'; they must be attuned to the contexts in which life takes place. Analysing people's actions and behaviours in the context of their lives-as-lived throws light onto apparently irrational decisions and emphasizes the importance of an in-depth understanding of local moral worlds and social contexts. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]