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A Fraught Embrace – The Romance and Reality of AIDS Altruism in Africa - Princeton Scholarship Online
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A Fraught Embrace: The Romance and Reality of AIDS Altruism in Africa

Ann Swidler and Susan Cotts Watkins


In the wake of the AIDS pandemic, legions of organizations and compassionate individuals descended on Africa from faraway places to offer their help and save lives. This book shows how the dreams of these altruists became entangled with complex institutional and human relationships. The book describes the often mismatched expectations and fantasies of those who seek to help, of the villagers who desperately seek help, and of the brokers on whom both Western altruists and impoverished villagers must rely. Based on years of fieldwork in the heavily AIDS-affected country of Malawi, this book digs ... More

Keywords: AIDS pandemic, Malawi, AIDS enterprise, AIDS policy, brokers, guides, middlemen, altruism, global philanthropy, altruists

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2017 Print ISBN-13: 9780691173924
Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018 DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691173924.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Ann Swidler, author
University of California, Berkeley

Susan Cotts Watkins, author
University of Pennsylvania