Research Projects by Region

Blood of the Innocents: Stigma and the Unintended Consequences of Biomedical Interventions for HIV-Positive Children in Botswana

This project traces some of the sociocultural repercussions of Botswana’s highly successful Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission program and nationwide antiretroviral drug rollout. The project asks why stigma against HIV-positive children appears to be increasing in response to highly effective treatment and prevention efforts (which global health experts predict should lead to decreased stigma).

Great Expectations: Humanitarianism and the Invention of AIDS Orphans in Botswana

Dahl’s anthropological research in Botswana explores the social effects of international humanitarian organizations' efforts to provide aid during the HIV pandemic, with particular focus on programs that support orphaned children. She also finds a significant tradeoff associated with the provision of aid. In particular, aid workers provide an alternative and much needed source of authority and nurture for orphans; but in so doing the workers erode the traditional kin-network as an alternative source of care giving.