Cover

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Title page, Copyright, Dedication

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Contents

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Preface

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pp. ix-xii

The civil war in Sierra Leone (1991–2002) lasted more than eleven years and left over 50,000 people dead. In early 2003, in the war’s aftermath, 500,000 Sierra Leoneans—10 percent of the population—were still living outside the country, and hundreds of thousands were...

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Introduction. HIV Exceptionalism in Sierra Leone: Christiana’s Story

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pp. 1-24

I first met Christiana in mid-2006, at a social club in Freetown, Sierra Leone. A mother of two who had married her childhood sweetheart, Christiana had almond-shaped eyes and an infectious smile that immediately endeared her to me. Within days of meeting, she witnessed...

I. The Exceptional Life of HIV in Sierra Leone

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1. The HIV Industry in Postwar Sierra Leone

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pp. 27-41

In late June 2005, I attended a two-day strategic planning meeting to discuss Sierra Leone’s response to HIV/AIDS. Representatives from community-based and international nongovernmental organizations, private industry, and government agencies were all in attendance...

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2. Exceptional Life, Exceptional Suffering: Enumerating HIV’s Truths

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pp. 42-58

In October 2007, a press conference held in Freetown launched a week dedicated to ending stigma and discrimination against people living with HIV and AIDS. Although few cases of discrimination against people living with HIV/AIDS had been reported in Sierra Leone, the event was nevertheless presented with great fanfare at a venue...

II. Becoming HIV- Positive

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3. The Imperative to Talk: Disclosure and Its Preoccupations

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pp. 61-88

When I entered the Miatta Conference Hall for the launch of a new network of HIV support associations, a meticulously produced choral version of “The First Noel” was blaring over a rock concert−grade sound system. Bottles of water were placed at the high table, and the coordinators, wearing...

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4. Positive Living: Hierarchies of Visibility, Vulnerability, and Self- Reliance

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pp. 89-114

In early 2007, I drove into the center of town from the West End, to attend an AIDS Support Association (ASA) group meeting at their new office. When I arrived, I found a set of red metal doors that had been left ajar, revealing a dark, cool entryway leading to a set of stairs...

III. HIV and Governance

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5. For Love of Country: Model Citizens, Good Governance, and the Nationalization of HIV

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pp. 117-137

When I arrived in Sierra Leone to do preliminary fieldwork for this project in 2005, my host Omar, a government worker and son of a former civil servant, offered to introduce me to two high-ranking officials in the National AIDS Secretariat (NAS). Part of the government...

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Conclusion: The Future of HIV Exceptionalism

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pp. 138-146

During a debate at the Fourteenth International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in 2012, Mead Over, a health economist and senior fellow at the Center for Global Development, recounted an anecdote from his work:
A couple of years ago, I visited a PEPFAR...

Acknowledgments

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pp. 147-150

Notes

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pp. 151-158

Bibliography

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pp. 159-172

Index

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pp. 173-177