"... but then he became my sipa": The implications of relationship fluidity for condom use among women sex workers in Antananarivo, Madagascar

Kirsten Stoebenau, Michelle J. Hindin, Constance A. Nathanson, Paul Ghislain Rakotoarison, Violette Razafintsalama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Increasing evidence indicates that sex workers use condoms less consistently with regular (i.e., nonpaying)partners thanwith clients. Fewstudieshave examined the extent to which these 2 categories are mutually exclusive. In an ethnographic study of women's sex work in Antananarivo, Madagascar, we examined how the meaning ofwomen sexworkers' sexual relationships could shift among 3 different forms of sex work. Condom use was less likely in forms in which the distinction between client and lover (sipa in Malagasy) was fluid. For many sex workers, therefore, relationships theyunderstoodtobeintimateimpartedthe greatesthealth vulnerability. It is important to examine the influence of the meaning of sexual relationships on condom use for HIV prevention. Policy implications for HIV prevention work with sex workers are considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)811-819
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Volume99
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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