Projects & Events

Covering Sex and the Epidemic

7 July 2005

A comparative look at HIV/AIDS reportage in the U.S. and South Africa

Professor Doug Foster, associate professor at Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University, looked at the history of the gaps in the first few waves of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the U.S. and ways in which this history resonates in a South African setting. The presentation was followed by a lively and interesting “conversation” based on these remarks, between John Perlman, journalist and presenter of SAFM’s “AM Live”, the audience and a panel of three health journalists namely: Kerry Cullinan (manager, Health-e news service), Jillian Green (health and science journalist, The Star) and Tamar Kahn (science and health editor, Business Day). Seventy people attended the forum, again forming an audience of journalists, activists, doctors, scientists and others. A retrospective booklet will be produced by the end of March and will be available in hard copy and online.

The suggestions made during the discussion, such as a specialistforum for health journalists and then editors, will be carried forward into planning for future forums.

Publications and Presentations

  • Covering Sex and the Epidemic: A comparative look at HIV/AIDS reportage in the US and South Africa (1.34 MB) A discussion forum publication.
  • Remarks on AIDS Reporting (93.00 KB) By Doug Foster.
  • Transcript of Discussion Forum (112.50 KB) Read the full proceedings here.