the burgeoning AIDS crisis. Her principal research interests are problems of modernization, urbanization, gender-relations and sexuality, including sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS, medical anthropology and the articulation of traditional and modern health systems. She has also done long-term field stud­ies in Botswana.

Jo Helle-Valle holds a doctoral degree in social anthropology from the Univer­sity of Oslo. He has conducted field work in Uganda and Botswana and also brief­ly in Ethiopia and Norway. After working for many years on issues of sexuality, local social organization and politics, and economy at the University of Oslo, he is now working as a researcher at the National Institute for Consumer Research (SIFO).

Katarina Jungar is a researcher in the project “HIV, knowledge and power: Rep­resentations of HIV in activism and medical discourses”, financed by the Acade­my of Finland (2002—2004). The project is an ethnographical study on the Treat­ment Action Campaign in Cape Town, South Africa. Besides her academic work on women’s activism and networks, and on questions of violence against women, she is involved in a feminist shelter and help-line project in Abo, Finland.

Mary E. Modupe Kolawole is professor of English and Women’s Studies at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. She specialises in African women’s literature and cultural studies, African-American women’s literature and gender theory. Her books include Womanism and African Consciousness (Africa World Press 1997), which is on the reading list at universities in many countries. Mary Kola­wole has been a visiting fellow and guest researcher at a series of universities in Africa, Europe and the United States. She is the Nigerian coordinator for the Women Writing Africa project, a Feminist Press project.

Mumbi Machera is a lecturer at the Department of Sociology, University of Nai­robi. She has a Bachelor of Arts in social work and a Master of Arts in population studies and demography. She is currently in the process of finalizing her Ph. D. thesis on gender violence in Kenya. She is a recipient of several fellowship awards and has been a guest researcher at universities in Africa, Europe and the United States. She also works as a consultant, in the area of sexuality and social problems, in the East African region.

Authors’ Biographies

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Elina Oinas is currently working as acting professor in Women’s Studies at Abo Akademi University, Finland. Her research continues from the themes of her Ph. D. dissertation Making Sense of the Teenage Body (Abo Akademi University Press, 2001). Her themes are: gender, health and knowledge. Oinas’ research focuses on HIV activism in South Africa and she collaborates with Katarina Jungar. Oinas is also interested in feminist theory, methodology and teaching.