n IFE PsychologIA : An International Journal - The role of HIV / AIDS within a low income urban household setting in Botswana : changing dynamics of gender and personal space contracts




The aim of the study was to analyse the dynamics of gender and space utilization, within low income urban households in Gaborone, the capital city of Botswana, in the context of care giving for people living with HIV, and guardianship for HIV / AIDS orphan children. The study relied on a qualitative methodology. The selection of key informants was based on convenience sampling whereas the choice of household respondents was based on purposive sampling and snowballing techniques. An interview guide was used for in-depths interviews. Observations were made about the indoor and outdoor living conditions of the household respondents. Results show that care giving is gendered. First, the traditional gendered utilization of space is constantly being negotiated, in response to the requirements of HIV patients and those of HIV / AIDS orphan children. Secondly, the proliferating female HIV / AIDS patient care-giving and orphan children guardianship appear to be threatening the central and pivotal position of the father figure within the patriarchal household setting.


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