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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - African Population Studies
Title The influence of gender role attitudes on risky sexual behaviour: evidence from the 2008 Botswana AIDS impact survey III
Author(s)
Volume 25
Issue 2
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2011
Page numbers 402-418
URL http://aps.journals.ac.za/pub/article/view/238
Abstract
Previous studies have posed seemingly contradictory arguments that either traditional
attitudes or egalitarian attitudes are associated with riskier behaviour. Little
research has been conducted to document how gender role attitudes influence
sexual behaviour in Botswana. The purpose of this study is to examine the association
between gender role attitudes and risky sexual behaviour. Data used in this
study are from the 2008 Botswana AIDS Impact Survey which was a nationally
representative, population-based survey. Cross-tabulations and logistic regression
analysis were used to assess the influence of gender role attitudes on risky sexual
behaviour such non-use of condom and multiple sexual partners. The cross-tabulated
results of the study showed that generally women had egalitarian gender
role attitudes towards sexual behaviours compared to the men. Bivariate analysis
showed that about 47% of the respondents believed men can have more than
one sexual partner at a time while 42% indicated that women can have more
than one sexual partner at a time. Over one in ten reported that it is a wife’s duty
to have sex with her husband even if she does not want to and about 24% of the
respondents reported that it is not a woman’s right to decide if she will have safe
sex. The logistic regression results showed that the selected gender role attitude
variables were not significantly associated with risky sexual behaviour except the
belief that it is acceptable for a partner to be in possession of a female condom.
In short, after controlling for important socio-demographic variables, the analysis
showed that traditional gender role attitudes were not significantly associated
with risky sexual behaviour of non-use of condoms and engagement in multiple
sexual relationships. The relationship between gender role attitudes and sexual
behaviour is very complex and detailed qualitative research may provide more
answers to the research questions than a cross-sectional study design. Additional
research is required to understand this complex relationship.

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