Men’s refashioning of masculine identities in Uganda and their self-management of HIV treatment

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Studies in sub-Saharan Africa show that masculine identities contribute to men’s relatively lower uptake of HIV services. Although useful, these studies pay less attention to men’s agency to negotiate and refashion masculine identities which better suit their lives as men living with HIV. In this article, I analyze the refashioning of masculine identities among men living with HIV in Uganda, adjustment processes which helped their self-management, and adherence to treatment. In-depth interviews with 18 men are thematically analyzed. Physical recovery was the embodiment of recovered masculinity and underpinned the men’s ability to refashion alternative, hybrid masculinities. Men negotiated and refashioned two forms of dominant masculinity already identified in this context, respectability and reputation, notably being a responsible father again and supporting other men with HIV, and being strong, resilient and an HIV survivor. Understanding men’s refashioning of masculinities can inform service providers’ approaches to reach more men with HIV treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1199-1212
Number of pages14
JournalQualitative Health Research
Issue number8
Early online date14 Feb 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2019


  • gender
  • masculinity
  • illness and disease
  • experiences
  • coping and adaptation
  • self-care
  • adherence
  • African Continental Ancestry Group
  • qualitative
  • Africa
  • Uganda

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