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The conversant community : HIV health promotion work at Action Séro Zéro


The conversant community : HIV health promotion work at Action Séro Zéro

Haig, Thomas Arthur (2001) The conversant community : HIV health promotion work at Action Séro Zéro. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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This dissertation is a case study drawn from ethnographic research undertaken at Action Séro Zéro , a community-based health promotion organization in Montréal providing HIV prevention services to gay, bisexual and transgender men. The research focuses on how people working at this organization use conversation as a health promotion strategy. The use of conversation in Séro Zéro's work is examined in relation to idealized conceptions of community, common within the health promotion paradigm, as a self-organizing, grassroots civil sector well placed to address fundamental health issues. Such conceptions pose problems for undertaking prevention work within the complex, contested, and far-from-ideal terrain of 'the gay community.' Practices that encourage conversation, and the recurrence of face-to-face talk as a theme characterizing Séro Zéro's work, are analyzed as a significant way in which the organization deals with the discrepancies between the idealized community of health promotion and the constraints of community-based work. In response to calls by some theorists to abandon community as a frame of reference for social analysis and action, a theory of 'conversant community' is developed. This conception is used to argue that Séro Zéro's work develops the dialogic and ethical relations of interpersonal talk as a form of agency important to well-being and health, extending the dimensions of community produced and experienced through the act and the art of conversation.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Communication Studies
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Haig, Thomas Arthur
Pagination:vi, 263 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Program:Communication Studies
Thesis Supervisor(s):Sawchuk, Kimberly A
ID Code:1419
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:27 Aug 2009 17:19
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:16
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