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Aids and maternity in India

Patrice Cohen
Suniti Solomon

Editors and Scientific Advisory Committee

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1Patrice Cohen is Senior Lecturer in Anthropology and currently co-director of the Group of Research of Innovations and Societies (GRIS), Department of Sociology, University of Rouen, France.

2He is specialized in the cultural anthropology of food and of health. In the 1990s, he developed anthropological research on HIV/AIDS, and training of public and NGOs institutions implied in the prevention of HIV/AIDS in the Indian Ocean region.

3From 2000 to 2002, he was head of Department of Social Sciences at the French Institute of Pondicherry, where he initiated the programme “Health and Societies” in India. He is now head of a social sciences project on MTCT in South India at the French Institute.

  • 1 P. Cohen, 2000. “Le cari partagé – anthropologie de l’alimentation à l’île de la Réunion” [Shared c (...)
  • 2 D. Carricaburu & P. Cohen, 2002 (eds.). Regards croisés sur la santé – Itinéraires de recherche en (...)

4He published a book (2000, in French) on the anthropology of food in Reunion Island (Indian Ocean)1, several scientific papers on food, health and HIV/AIDS. He has participated in various national and international conferences and recently co-edited collective books: on the methodological aspects of research in health through sociology and anthropology2 (2002, in French) and on social water management in rural India (2003, in English).


6Suniti Solomon, was professor of microbiology (Institute of Microbiology at the Madras Medical College). In 1986, her team documented the first evidence of the HIV infection in India. Later, she set up the AIDS Cell, with the help of the Indian Council of Medical Research. In 1993, she sought voluntary retirement and founded the YRG Centre for AIDS Research and Education (YRG CARE), Chennai.

7This foundation is devoted to prevention, care and research of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and has initiated numerous very innovative activities in these areas.

8Suniti Solomon, Director, YRG CARE, and her centre have become a reference in India and throughout the world for HIV/AID researchers and institutions. YRG CARE, in 1998, was one of the first institutions in India to open a special medical consultation for HIV-positive women, and to be involved in the prevention of mother-to-child transmission and in ARV drug therapy for PLWHA. Her research is devoted to a number of very innovative subjects: microbicides, ARV therapy, Prevention to Mother to Child Transmission, women and AIDS, compliance to therapy, sexual behaviours, etc.


Scientific Advisory Committee

10Kappila Barucha, Medical officer, Sassoon Hospital, Pune, India.

11Frédéric Bourdier, PhD in Geography and in Anthropology, researcher at the Laboratoire, Sociétés, Santé et Développement, Université de Bordeaux 2, France. He has for many years carried out research on health and HIV/AIDS in South India. He has published in French “Sexualité et sociabilité en Inde du sud” [Sexuality and Sociability in South India], 2001, and in English “Of Research and Action – Contribution of Non Governmental Organizations and Social Scientists in the Fight against the HIV/AIDS Epidemic in India, 1999. He is now working on the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Brazil and in Cambodia.

12Shankar Chowdhury, PhD in Anthropology, National Officer HIV/AIDS, UNESCO, New Delhi, India. He launched in August 2002 a “National consultation for cultural studies for HIV/AIDS in India” for the development of research in the social sciences in India. A publication by UNESCO, India, on this topic was published in 2003.

13Soizic Crochet, PhD in Anthropology, Laboratoire d’écologie humaine et d’anthropologie, Université d’Aix-Marseille, France. She is specialized in medical anthropology in South Asia (Thailand, Cambodia), and she is developing an anthropological research on cultural practices of breastfeeding and the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Cambodia.

14Alice Desclaux, Prof. of Anthropology, PhD in Public Health, Laboratoire d’écologie humaine et d’anthropologie, Université d’Aix-Marseille. She is a known international specialist in the anthropological approach to HIV/AIDS, especially in West Africa, and on MTCT. She co-edited in 2000 the book in French “Allaitement maternel et HIV en Afrique de l’Ouest” [Breastfeeding and HIV in West Africa – from anthropology to public health].

15Bernard Personnaz, Research Director, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, France, Prof. of Social Psychology, University of Rouen, France.


1 P. Cohen, 2000. “Le cari partagé – anthropologie de l’alimentation à l’île de la Réunion” [Shared carry – anthropology of food habits in the Reunion Islands], Karthala, Paris, 355 p.

2 D. Carricaburu & P. Cohen, 2002 (eds.). Regards croisés sur la santé – Itinéraires de recherche en anthropologie et en sociologie, Innovations et sociétés, n° 2, L’Harmattan, Paris, 188 p; P. Cohen & S. Janakarajan (eds.), 2003. Water Management in Rural South India and Sri Lanka – Emerging Themes and critical issues, Publications du Département de Sciences Sociales n° 7, French Institute of Pondicherry, 189 p.

© Institut Français de Pondichéry, 2004

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