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Compounding Risk: The Move Toward “Risk Environments”

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Part of the Palgrave Macmillan’s Content and Context in Theological Ethics book series (CCTE)

Abstract

Scientific commentary and method demonstrate the tendency to atomize, dissect, and reduce, and therefore, not always see the complexity of systems and structures. HIV & AIDS interpretations assumed this stance as well, primarily discussing the virus as a biomedical/health issue during its first nearly two decades. In this way, they ignored the tangled interplay of various systems other than biomedicine/health making up “risk environments” for contracting it. In the most reductionist view, HIV is seen as a problem of individual sick bodies alone. However, the ways that we think of our bodies and how we use them are products of socio-religio-politico-cultural-economic-historical forces.2 Just as understandings of disease and wellness are constructed, so are our understandings of bodies made up of the tangled interactions of social and ideological systems. HIV is a virus with particular characteristics; however, the epidemic manifestations of this virus are more complex and based on the structures of each society within which it is present.

Keywords

Risk Environment British Colonial Asian Descent Concurrent Partnership Reductionist View 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Allan Brandt, “AIDS: From Social History to Social Policy” in AIDS: The Burdens of History, ed. Elizabeth Fee and Daniel M. Fox (Berkeley, CA: The University of California Press, 1988), 167.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Tony Barnett and Alan Whiteside, AIDS in the Twenty-First Century: Disease and Globalization, 2nd edition (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2006), 77.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Paula A. Treichler, “AIDS, Gender, and Biomedical Discourse” in AIDS: The Burdens of History, ed. Elizabeth Fee and Daniel M. Fox (Berkeley, CA: The University of California Press, 1988), 202.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Gerald M. Oppenheimer, “In the Eye of the Storm” in AIDS: The Burdens of History, ed. Elizabeth Fee and Daniel M. Fox (Berkeley, CA: The University of California Press, 1988), 269.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Guenter B. Risse, “Epidemics and History: Ecological Perspectives and Social Responses” in AIDS: The Burdens of History, ed. Elizabeth Fee and Daniel M. Fox (Berkeley, CA: The University of California Press, 1988), 56.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    See Elizabeth Fee and Daniel M. Fox, eds., AIDS: The Burdens of History (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1988).Google Scholar
  7. 24.
    Paul Farmer, Infections and Inequalities: The Modern Plagues (Berkeley, CA: The University of California Press, 1999), 84.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Cassie J. E. H. Trentaz 2012

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