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Title: The discursive construction of childhood and youth in AIDS interventions in Lesotho's education sector: Beyond global-local dichotomies
Authors: Ansell, N
Keywords: Childhood;Young people;AIDS industry;Education policy;Discourse;Power;Lesotho
Issue Date: 2010
Publisher: Pion LTD
Citation: Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 28(5), 791 - 810, 2010
Abstract: In southern Africa interventions to halt the spread of AIDS and address its social impacts are commonly targeted at young people, in many cases through the education sector. In Lesotho, education-sector responses to AIDS are the product of negotiation between a range of ‘local’ and ‘global’ actors. Although many interventions are put forward as government policy and implemented by teachers in schools, funding is often provided by bilateral and multilateral donors, and the international ‘AIDS industry’—in the form of UN agencies and international NGOs—sets agendas and makes prescriptions. This paper analyses interviews conducted with policy makers and practitioners in Lesotho and a variety of documents, critically examining the discourses of childhood and youth that are mobilised in producing changes in education policy and practice to address AIDS. Focusing on bursary schemes, life-skills education, and rights-based approaches, the paper concludes that, although dominant ‘global’ discourses are readily identified, they are not simply imported wholesale from the West, but rather are transformed through the organisations and personnel involved in designing and implementing interventions. Nonetheless, the connections through which these discourses are made, and children are subjectified, are central to the power dynamics of neoliberal globalisation. Although the representations of childhood and youth produced through the interventions are hybrid products of local and global discourses, the power relations underlying them are such that they, often unintentionally, serve a neoliberal agenda by depicting young people as individuals in need of saving, of developing personal autonomy, or of exercising individual rights.
Description: This is the post-print version of this article. The definitive, peer-reviewed and edited version of this article is published in Environment and Planning D,Society and Space 28(5) 791 – 810, 2010, available from the link below. Copyright @ 2010 Pion.
ISSN: 0263-7758
Appears in Collections:Human Geography
Social Work
Dept of Clinical Sciences Research Papers

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