Consuming sex: The association between modern goods, lifestyles and sexual behaviour among youth in Madagascar

Kirsten Stoebenau, Rama C Nair, Valérie Rambeloson, Paul Ghislain Rakotoarison, Violette Razafintsalama and Ronald Labonté Globalization and Health, 2013; Vol. 9, Issue 13 Download publication (open access)

Ethnographic evidence suggests that transactional sex is sometimes motivated by young people’s interest in the consumption of designer goods as much as it is in basic survival.

A study in Madagascar examined this association in rural, urban and peri-urban settings. Peri-urban residence was more associated with transactional sex than urban residence. Ethnic origin was the strongest predictor of both outcomes for women.

While findings indicate an association between sexual behaviour and interest in modern goods or lifestyles therefore, they do not single-handedly explain risky sexual behaviour among youth; these behaviours were also shaped by culture and conditions of economic uncertainty.

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