Fighting HIV/AIDS through popular Zambian music

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Peer-Reviewed Research
  • SDG 3
  • Abstract:

    This paper explores how HIV/AIDS education messages are transmitted through popular Zambian music lyrics. The focus is on the recontextualisation of lived experiences and Zambian cultural practices in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Using multimodal discourse analysis, the paper uses Zambian popular music lyrics to show how Zambian musicians deliberately blend languages, socio-cultural artefacts and knowledge into a hybrid of 'infotainment' in the fight against HIV/AIDS. The paper concludes that although male dominance is still prevalent, choices regarding sex and discussions on sexual matters are no longer a preserve for the men, and that musicians are able to use language to reframe dominant cultural practices and taboos in the process of disseminating HIV/AIDS messages. This has produced altered social conditions, which sometimes distort the intended messages, but allow musicians to operate without fear of government censorship boards or running foul of cultural taboos.