Silences, gestures, and words: Nonverbal and verbal communication about HIV/AIDS and condom use in black heterosexual relationships

Lisa Bowleg, Pamela Valera, Michelle Teti, Jeanne M. Tschann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

This qualitative study examined how 27 Black men and women, ages 22 to 50 years, in heterosexual relationships communicated verbally and nonverbally about HIV/AIDS and condom use before first time sex. Although most interviewees reported no HIV/AIDS communication, most noted communication about condom use. Verbal condom communication focused typically on requests and declarations, whereas nonverbal communication centered on the presentation of condoms. Women were more likely to communicate about condoms verbally, whereas men were more likely to do so nonverbally. Interviewees who communicated about condom use were more likely than those who did not to report first-time condom use. We discuss these findings and their implications within the context of relationship and sociocultural factors relevant to HIV/AIDS in Black communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)80-90
Number of pages11
JournalHealth Communication
Volume25
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health(social science)
  • Communication

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