Gender inequalities, intimate partner violence and HIV preventive practices: findings of a South African cross-sectional study

Jewkes, RK; Levin, JB; Penn-Kekana, LA; (2003) Gender inequalities, intimate partner violence and HIV preventive practices: findings of a South African cross-sectional study. Social science & medicine, 56 (1). pp. 125-134. ISSN 0037-7856

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The aim of the paper is to investigate associations between a range of markers of gender inequity, including financial, psychological and physical violence, and two proximal practices in HIV prevention, namely discussion of HIV between partners and the woman suggesting condom use. The paper presents an analysis of data from a cross-sectional study of a representative sample of women from three South African Provinces which was primarily undertaken as an epidemiological study of gender-based violence. A multi-stage sampling design was used with clusters sampled with probability proportional to number of households. Households were randomly selected from within clusters. One randomly selected woman aged 18-49 years was interviewed in each selected home. One thousand three hundred and six women were interviewed (90.3% of eligible women). One thousand one hundred sixty four women had a partner in the previous year and were asked questions related to HIV prevention and gender inequalities in the relationship. The results indicate that discussion of HIV was significantly positively associated with education, living in Mpumalanga Province, the man being a migrant, the woman having multiple partners in the past year and having no confidante. It was significantly negatively associated with living in the Northern Province, the relationship being poor and there being a substantial age difference between partners. The woman suggesting condom use was significantly positively associated with her education, her having multiple partners, domestic violence prior to the past year and financial abuse. It was negatively associated with the relationship being poor. We conclude that this suggests that some indicators of gender inequalities are significantly associated with discussion of HIV and condom use but the direction of association found was both positive and negative. This highlights the need for a more nuanced understanding of gender inequalities and their relationship to HIV risk. Suggestions for key research questions are made.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Adolescent, Adult, Communication, Cross-Sectional Studies, Domestic Violence/ethnology/*statistics & numerical data, Family Characteristics, Female, HIV Infections/ethnology/*prevention & control, Human, Interviews, Male, Middle Age, Probability, Questionnaires, Sex Behavior/*ethnology, Sexual Partners/*psychology, Socioeconomic Factors, South Africa/epidemiology, Support, Non-U.S. Gov't, Transients and Migrants/psychology
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Public Health and Policy > Dept of Social and Environmental Health Research
Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health > Dept of Infectious Disease Epidemiology


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