Skip to main content

State-sanctioned discrimination and media discourses on homosexuality in Namibia

Buy Article:

$18.00 plus tax (Refund Policy)


The article critically discusses the events arising from the finalization of the Namibian National HIV/AIDS Policy of 2007. A series of consultative meetings throughout Namibia produced a progressive draft policy that recognized individuals engaged in same-sex sexual relationships and emphasized the distinct vulnerabilities of the group. However, despite solid epidemiological support and stakeholders' endorsement of inclusion, the key section dealing with same-sex relations never made it into print. By using document analyses, interviews and media content analysis, the article concludes that state-sanctioned discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) individuals, outlined in existing Namibian criminal laws, also resulted in a denial of their rights to health in the new HIV/AIDS policy. Moreover, the study found that the state-sanctioned discrimination is reproduced in the state-owned print media, and that LGBT individuals are dependent on the independent media for visibility. The implications of the media discourses are discussed using an agenda setting perspective.

Keywords: HIV/AIDS; Namibia; Sub-Saharan Africa; agenda setting; discrimination; homosexuality; media freedom

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Uppsala University.

Publication date: 2011-03-01

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of African Media Studies (JAMS) is an interdisciplinary journal that provides a forum for debate on the historical and contemporary aspects of media and communication in Africa.�
  • Editorial Board
  • Information for Authors
  • Subscribe to this Title
  • Ingenta Connect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more