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Atlas Africa Health Section SP19

Published by sofiesheldon1, 2019-07-29 19:47:01

Description: Atlas Africa Ronni Article SP19

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Atlas Africa Spring 2019 Health Section Reimagining the African Health Rhetoric Ronni Ravid From the Ebola outbreak primal and archaic,  a piece to the AIDS epidemic it of history lost in time and seems that all we ever hear meant to be preserved. But about African health is its the negative discourse also hopeless insolvability. We encourages the often hear of the ways continuation of colonial western institutions have dynamics between Africa managed to abate the and the western world. By issues, but rarely do we painting Africa as a place encounter a story about always in need of saving, the African innovations for West relegates the African problems. The continent as the locale for constant negative rhetoric the “white savior” to take used to describe the action. problems that plague Africa perpetuates the content’s stigma of underdevelopment. This stigma is problematic on many ends. For starters, it facilitates Africa’s underdevelopment by painting the continent as  www.shelfridgebooks.com SHELFRIDGE BOOKS

A Guide to Modern Philosophy A.M. Miles The rhetoric attached to discussions about the African continent create a fictitious image of perpetual ruin, disease and violence in the western imaginary. From television advertisements to academic journals the western mind is flooded with statistics and images especially in regard to their of widespread, seemingly tourism-centered insatiable, suffering. Take economies. Some African the AIDS epidemic, for leaders even claimed that example. Though the the epidemic was being disease was a worldwide blown out of proportion by public health issue, it the western media. During somehow still came to be the World Health associated with the Organization’s meeting in primitivity of the African 1985, African health continent. Early researchers practitioners complained of the epidemic were that the clinical symptoms focused on proving that given to AIDS were far too AIDS was African in origin general. Without the proper rather than finding tools to test for the antibody solutions to contain the abnormalities associated illness. Through this with AIDS, many African process, the stigma health practitioners relied attached to the AIDS on a list of general epidemic became symptoms that led to an attached to the African over-diagnosis of the continent as well. disease. Thus, Africa came to Numerous countries felt be known as the origin and the impact of falsely contagion of the AIDS ascribed AIDS stigma,  epidemic. www.shelfridgebooks.com SHELFRIDGE BOOKS

A Guide to Modern Philosophy A.M. Miles We have seen western role of the West as the voice institutions like the Bill and of reason and holder of all Melinda Gates Foundation, knowledges. Many public Red Cross and UNICEF health campaigns in the among many others developing world rely on attempt to “solve” Africa’s Western ideals that create a various health problems paternal dynamic between through western means.  western NGOs and their target communities. These uneven dynamics ultimately undermine the autonomy of individuals the initiative attempts to help. Conditional Cash Transfers (CCTs) are a clear example of this paternal relationship in action. CCTs aim to These attempts to help, encourage good health though perhaps well- behavior by providing cash intended, carry with them incentives to compliant numerous ethical issues households. While these may be rooted in good that crystalize the colonial intentions, these programs relations between the West police and subordinate the and the African continent. individuals they intend to This relationship is clearly help. These programs demonstrated in public establish an health promotion authoritative  relationship strategies.Though the between the giver and promotion of good public receiver of aid and stifle health practices is meant to local innovation by improve the overall assigning a fixed, one size fits all, solution to numerous wellbeing of a nation, it communities. Many of these reinforces the authoritative  programs do not account for the local contextBStHOhEOLKeFSRyIDGE www.shelfridgebooks.com

A Guide to Modern Philosophy A.M. Miles function within and can The AIDS epidemic in inadvertently burden the Uganda serves as a good community they try to help example for ethical and by assigning its members local health solutions. extra obligations. Throughout the 1980s a number of African countries What is missing from the struggled to mitigate the AIDS issue due to a general discourse on African health stigmatization of AIDS positive individuals. This is the African voice itself. stigmatization was largely rooted in western, Christian This section aims to beliefs that demonized extra-marital sex and highlight African individuals homosexuality. Without the ability to publicly discuss and institutions that are the issues that lead to the spread of the disease, many countries were generally unable to help their citizens. attempting to solve health- related issues through a local framework. While the technological innovations and access to resources that western NGOs can provide is unparalleled; local individuals and grassroots partnerships Uganda, however, have demonstrated that demonstrated that a successful impact relies bottom-up, locally-led upon a deeper solution is possible. understanding of the local Beginning in 1985, the cultural context. SHELFRIDGE BOOKS www.shelfridgebooks.com

A Guide to Modern Philosophy A.M. Miles Ugandan government of African solutions for created the first African African problems. The AIDS Control Program. protocol targets key issues related to women’s health This program aimed to like maternal mortality and destigmatize the disease access to contraception in by instigating meaningful, order to improve the educational discussions led livelihoods of households by local stakeholders like throughout the African religious and political Union. The call for this community leaders. protocol was led by local Uganda recognized that African feminist movements the western stigmatization that deeply understood the of the disease ultimately issues of their own obstructed any open communities. The discussion of the topic. The widespread acceptance of Ugandan effort to shift the the protocol (ratified by two- local conversation using thirds of the African Union) local players proved not only demonstrates the successful in reducing HIV effectivity of locally prevalence in the country. generated solutions, but also negates the accepted On a grander scale, the notion that Africa is unable ability of African countries to set their own health to govern itself. policy and protocols is imperative to the This section aims to debunk continued development of the continent as a whole. pre-held assumptions that African countries must be given the autonomy to Africa is unable to identify and solve their own issues without paternal, autonomously solve its own western oversight. The African Women’s Protocol health related issues. It also is another demonstration  aims to shift the www.shelfridgebooks.com conversation away from the disaster-oriented rhetoric typically used to discuss prevailing health issues in Africa. SHELFRIDGE BOOKS

A Guide to Modern Philosophy A.M. Miles fUltimately, we hope to 3. Nicolson, R. (1994). AIDS: demonstrate that the The Ethical Issues. paternal relationship Missionalia: Southern between the West and the African Journal of Mission African Union is not only Studies, 22(3), 227244. unnecessary, but Retrieved from obstructive to the creation https://journals.co.za/docser of uniquely African solutions. African countries ver/fulltext/mission/22/3/60. have demonstrated their pdf?expires=1558985799 competence in regard to &id=id&accname=guest&ch mitigating their health ecksum=101299EE469BDB3 issues and it is time they 48C5D55A2E54DC719 are given the power to solve their own problems. 4. Kagaayi, J., & Serwadda, D. (1904). The History of the HIV/AIDS Epidemic in Africa.    https://doi.org/10.1007/s1190 4-016-0318-8 1.Kagaayi, J. & Serwadda, D. 5. Ibid. Curr HIV/AIDS Rep (2016) 13: 187. 6. Klugman, J. (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s1190 Women’s Health and 4-016-0318-8 Human Rights: Public Spending on Health and 2. Gardner, J. (2014). Ethical the Military One Decade issues in public health after the African Women’s promotion. South African Protocol. African Human Journal of Bioethics and Rights Law Journal, 1. Law, 7(1), 30–33. https://doi.org/10.7196/SAJB SHELFRIDGE L.268 BOOKS www.shelfridgebooks.com


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