Steady with custom: Mediating HIV prevention in the Trobriand Islands, Papua New Guinea

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


    Biomedicine and epidemiology have made possible an understanding of HIV pathology and the way the virus damages the human immune system to the extent that infected bodies eventually die from the complications of AIDS. But these specialized fields of knowledge have been unable to prevent the persistent spread of HIV throughout the world. Three decades since the virus was first isolated and named, the magnitude of HIV represents the most serious public health issue confronting the world today. In 2007 there were an estimated 2.7 million new cases of HIV infection, 33 million people living with the virus, and 2 million AIDS deaths (UNAIDS 2008: 16). As the epigraph to this chapter suggests, the pandemic is modeled statistically like a ticking time bomb threatening to decimate even out-of-the-way places such as the Trobriand Islands, a group of small coral atolls in the Solomon Sea off the east coast of mainland Papua New Guinea (PNG), with a population of thirty thousand people.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationPlagues and Epidemics: Infected Spaces Past and Present
    Editors D A Herring & A C Swedlund
    Place of PublicationOxford
    PublisherBerg Publishers
    ISBN (Print)9781847885487
    Publication statusPublished - 2010


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