Cultural factors in young heterosexual men's perception of HIV risk

Wight, D. (1999) Cultural factors in young heterosexual men's perception of HIV risk. Sociology of Health and Illness, 21(6), pp. 735-758. (doi: 10.1111/1467-9566.00181)

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This paper analyses why HIV risk perceptions vary in a sample of 19-year-old Glaswegian men. The main approaches to explain risk behaviour can be characterised as: individual cognition theories, cultural theories and phenomenology. To date there have been few empirical applications of cultural theory. This paper explores how far a cultural approach can explain the variability in HIV risk perceptions and behaviour, focusing on two key socio-cultural factors: current occupation and stage in partnership career. The analysis shows that young men’s perceptions of HIV risk are shaped in part by the cultural meanings associated with their lifestyles and friendship groups, which largely arise from their occupational paths, and in part by the meanings that come with a particular stage of their partnership career. Recognising the role of cultural factors in lay people’s response to a new health threat has broader implications for health promotion.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Wight, Professor Danny
Authors: Wight, D.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:Sociology of Health and Illness
ISSN (Online):1467-9566

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