TitleConspiracy beliefs about HIV/AIDS and birth control among African Americans: implications for the prevention of HIV, other STIs, and unintended pregnancy.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsThorburn, S, Bogart, LM
JournalThe Journal of social issues
Volume61
Issue1
Pagination109-26
Date Published2005 Mar
KeywordsUnited States
Abstract

In this article, we examine the potential role that conspiracy beliefs regarding HIV/AIDS (e.g., "HIV is a manmade virus") and birth control (e.g., "The government is trying to limit the Black population by encouraging the use of condoms") play in the prevention of HIV, other STIs, and unintended pregnancies among African Americans in the United States. First, we review prior research indicating that substantial percentages of African Americans endorse conspiracy beliefs about HIV/AIDS and birth control. Next, we present a theoretical framework that suggests how conspiracy beliefs influence sexual behavior and attitudes. We then offer several recommendations for future research. Finally, we discuss the policy and programmatic implications of conspiracy beliefs for the prevention of HIV, other STIs, and unintended pregnancy.