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Ancestors and AntiretroviralsThe Bio-Politics of HIV/AIDS in Post-Apartheid South Africa$
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Claire Laurier Decoteau

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226064451

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226064628.001.0001

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A State in Denial

A State in Denial

(p.78) Two A State in Denial
Ancestors and Antiretrovirals

Claire Laurier Decoteau

University of Chicago Press

This chapter deconstructs former President Thabo Mbeki’s ‘AIDS denialism,’ and argues it can be understood as both a means of resolving the postcolonial paradox, and as a new construction of postcoloniality – one which defies African dependency on Western finance and culture and promotes a form of African renaissance. In the end, the chapter contends that Mbeki’s denialism amounted to a form of ‘necropolitics’ – the political decision to let a portion of the population die in the perceived interest of the nation. The chapter ends with a consideration of the effects of political abandonment on the subjectivities of those forced to haunt the margins of the postcolony.

Keywords:   AIDS denialism, necropolitics, neoliberalism, national imaginary, postcolonial, African renaissance, antiretrovirals, indigenous healing, race, Thabo Mbeki

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