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Subjects of counselling: Religion, Hiv/Aids and the management of everyday life in South Africa

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Chapter Summary

The aim of this chapter is to tease out the elective affinities and to thereby capture how religious organisations contribute to the re-shaping of concepts of responsible selfhood and counselled subjectivity. It argues that AIDS counselling is fundamentally concerned with producing, inculcating and disseminating new notions of moral responsibility and that its promotion by religious organisations is a response to the shortcomings of governmental programmes. The analysis is based on guided interviews with HIV counsellors and participant observations, carried out in Xhosa-speaking townships of Cape Town in 2006. Conceptually, the research is situated within the broader confines of a cultural sociology of public interventions and social technologies that seek to identify the mechanisms whereby human subjectivities and conduct are moulded and managed in relation to governmental techniques of power.

Keywords: AIDS; South Africa



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