Trend Analysis of HIV Prevalence Rates amongst Gen X and Y Pregnant Women Attending Antenatal Clinics in South Africa between 2001 and 2010

Wilbert Sibanda, Philip D. Pretorius


This research investigated the changes in HIV prevalence rates amongst Generation X (Gen X) and Generation Y (Gen Y) pregnant women attending antenatal clinics across the nine provinces of the Republic of South Africa over a period of ten years from 2001 to 2010. Gen X individuals were born after the Western post World War II baby-boomers, during the period 1961 to 1981. In the South African context, Gen Xers are individuals that were born in an era charged with political strife and dangers of a possible civil war. This period was also characterised by angry social protests, academic boycotts and Soweto student uprisings of 1976. Gen Y (also called Millenium Generation) is the demographic cohort that followed Gen X during the period 1982 to 2002. Gen Y is typified by the escalation of social unrest leading towards the democratic elections in 1994. The political change in 1994 ushered in a new political dispensation characterised by major changes in social and economic circumstances of most South Africans. The new government promoted open access to institutions of higher education resulting in a major transformation in the demographics of the country’s public service. Amongst the new working and middle class, sociological literature reports a remarkable increase in materialism and consumerism. However, the social privileges of a few existed hand-in-glove with unprecedented levels of youth unemployment. Youths from impoverished backgrounds found it increasingly difficult to attain a descent education. Most of these youths grew in homes characterised by physical violence and emotional abuse. In view of the widely held tenet that a generation is one of the fundamental social classifications in a society, this research aims to investigate the possible link between generational values and beliefs and the spread of HIV within the female population in South Africa.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n21p93

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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