Dramatizing Gender Stereotypes and Violence within the Context of Hiv/Aids in Kenya

Caroline C. Sambai


Gender based violence is key among other factors in fanning the spread of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Focusing on inequitable power relations, the lack of power to negotiate with the male partners, low economic status and inaccessibility to health care information puts women and girls at a much higher risk of contracting HIV/AIDS. This paper looks at the ways in which violence is dramatized based on the existing (mis)conceptions and misunderstandings of gender roles and sexuality within the HIV/AIDS discourse in Kenya based on a reading of the television program Siri. We argue that the persisting spread of HIV/AIDS could be partly blamed on the damaging expectations from the society and the gender and sexuality stereotypes that put both men and women at greater risks of contracting and further transmitting HIV/AIDS. The media has however been on the forefront in providing vital health care information on reproductive health, particularly on HIV/AIDS as well as providing forums which people can dialogue on a range of issues related to HIV/AIDS.

Key words: Gender stereotypes, violence, HIV/AIDS, Education-entertainment.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5766 ISSN (Online)2225-0484

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