oa Global Media Journal - African Edition - What about men? Gendered reception of an edutainment drama



An estimated 34 million people globally are living with HIV, with Sub-Saharan Africabeing the most severely affected area, with nearly 1 in every 20 adults diagnosed (UNAIDS, 2012). Botswana experiences one of the highest adult prevalence rates in Sub-Saharan Africa, with almost 100,000 children, in a country of only two million people, having lost a parent to the virus (Botswana Country Report, 2010). Makgabaneng is a serial radio soap drama that addresses critical HIV/AIDS awareness and behaviour change issues in Botswana. This study aims to understand how fans of the programme understand the storyline that presents narratives where female characters are portrayed as educated, independent and confident individuals. Results of 42 in-depth interviews with self-defined fans of the drama show that males are constructed as uneducated, irresponsible and dependent in society. It is recommended that Makgabaneng address this inequity by creating a more balanced number of positive and negative female and male characters.


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