Carole Campbell examines the position of women in the AIDS epidemic (women living with HIV, and the growing number of women caring for HIV-infected family members) in a sociocultural context. The early male profile of the AIDS epidemic has given rise to education and prevention programs based upon the needs of males. Campbell draws a clear connection between women's risk of AIDS, gender roles (particularly adolescent gender role socialization), and male sexual behavior, demonstrating that no efforts to contain the spread of the disease to females can succeed without also targeting the male behavior that puts women at risk. This study concludes that compared with men, HIV-infected women face unequal access to care and unequal quality of care. Campbell makes a compelling case that social institutions such as health care and the media have created barriers for women by failing to take into account the differences between men and women in terms of social roles, status, and power. Informed by the moving personal accounts of eleven HIV-infected men and women, this book offers a rare, broad picture of the sociocultural causes and the impact on American society of AIDS among women.
Introduction: women at risk; 1. Epidemiology, risk/transmission, and natural history of HIV disease in women and children; 2. Female reproductive health and sexuality; 3. Women at risk: drug use and prostitution; 4. Gender, culture, race, and class; 5. Men, gender roles, and sexuality; 6. Women, motherhood, and the family; 7. Women, men, the family, and HIV/AIDS; Appendix: method of inquiry and biographies of people living with HIV disease.