This paper discusses two case studies of women diagnosed with HIV and AIDS. Page (1984) observed that, in modern culture, stigma has taken the connotation of being “associated almost exclusively with ‘inferior’ forms of physical appearance, conduct or ethnicity” (p. 2), and further that, “stigma has tended to be associated with those inferior attributes that are commonly regarded as major norm infractions” (p. 4). In this sense HIV and AIDS are viewed as outside of the societal norm as the label must be shared to gain both support and services from the medical industry and family members. This paper discusses the lived experiences of marginalization and stigma associated with living with HIV and AIDS within the critical lens of being a woman. Participants shared their perspectives during an open ended interview process. Common emergent themes included that of discrimination, stigma within society and the familial unit, and stigma consciousness. As an outcome, participants suggest a social and educational response to those living with HIV and AIDS.
|Keywords:||AIDS, HIV, Stigma, Marginalization, Discrimination, Women|
Assistant Professor, Dwight Schar College of Education, Ashland University, Ashland, OH, USA
Assistant Professor, College of Education, Ashland University, Ashland, OH, USA
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