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The book shows that while gender inequalities in society generally, and particularly within the education sector, are driving aspects of the HIV epidemic, educational settings can be empowering and bring about change. It examines different expectations of what HIV education programmes and education settings can do to transform unequal gender relations and protect young people against HIV and AIDS and contribute to care for those affected and infected. It warns that an uncritical acceptance that education is a “social vaccine” protecting young people from HIV infection can be misleading and demonstrates that, to be effective, HIV and AIDS education must be based on a sensitive understanding of social and cultural context and the complexities of young people’ lives. The book illustrates the importance of democratic learning environments informed by evidence-based policy, implemented with strong leadership for transforming deeply held values and beliefs regarding sexual behaviour and sexuality.

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