Health, Desire, Respect and Fear: Talking to men about violence against women and HIV prevention in East New Britain Province, PNG

Event details

SSGM Seminar Series

Date & time

Tuesday 29 October 2013


Lecture Theatre 2, Hedley Bull Centre (130), corner of Garran Road and Liversidge Street, ANU
ANU Canberra


Stephanie Lusby, PhD Candidate, SSGM


Louana Gaffey
+61 2 6125 8244

Communities in East New Britain have been targeted by a steady stream of government, overseas donor, church and other non-government interventions aimed at preventing HIV and violence against women, particularly over the last ten years. Although recorded prevalence of HIV has steadied, there remain high rates of other STIs and unplanned pregnancies, rapes, unprotected sex with multiple partners, and a high prevalence of sex exchanged for money across the Province. Men in particular are reluctant seek HIV testing or to present at health centres in general. This indicates that messages provided through education interventions have not manifested as the kinds of behaviour change hoped for by program authors.

In this talk, I reflect upon 13 months of fieldwork across three sites in East New Britain where I spoke to men and women, including service providers and agents of prevention programs, about how HIV and violence prevention has been understood and applied by men. I introduce key themes that emerged in the research, and that will form the basis of my PhD thesis. I then provide a more detailed example of how some of these themes were discussed by research participants in the urban field site.

Stephanie Lusby is a PhD Candidate with SSGM at ANU. She has a BA (Honors) in International Studies from RMIT University, and has previously worked with overseas aid advocacy organisations AID/Watch and Jubilee Australia researching issues of development effectiveness in Melanesia. Stephanie's interest in her current research into men's engagement with violence prevention and sexual health interventions started when working with the Burnet Institute on a sexual health project in East New Britain as project management adviser from 2009-2011. Her most recent period of ethnographic fieldwork in East New Britain took place from March 2012-April 2013.


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