Old inequalities, new disease: HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa

Carol A. Heimer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

48 Scopus citations


It is especially the social aspects of the disease that make HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa different - and worse - than HIV/AIDS in the United States or Europe. By making Africans more vulnerable to economic and sexual exploitation, poverty first increases the likelihood that they will be infected. By making them unattractive customers for pharmaceuticals, poverty also puts therapies out of the reach of most Africans who need them. This review examines research on the integration of sub-Saharan Africa into the international worlds of the pharmaceutical trade, public health, and medical research. It finds that the pull of these institutions diminishes but does not disappear as we move from the realms of trade treaties to the clinics where testing and treatment occur and, finally, to the daily lives of people living with HIV.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAnnual Review of Sociology
EditorsKaren Cook, Douglas Massey
Number of pages27
StatePublished - 2007

Publication series

NameAnnual Review of Sociology
ISSN (Print)0360-0572


  • Clinical research
  • Health care
  • Institutions
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Sexuality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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