Epistemic Responsibility and Community Engagement in Sindiwe Magona’s Beauty’s Gift


  • Goutam Karmakar Sidho-Kanho-Birsha University
  • Rajendra Chetty University of the Western Cape




HIV/AIDS, epistemology, responsibility, awareness, community engagement


HIV/AIDS has pervasively affected the health and well-being of South African women, as evidenced by their exacerbating mortality rates over the decades. Sindiwe Magona’s Beauty’s Gift (2008) is a critical intervention in this regard because, in focusing on the death of a young black woman owing to her infection with HIV/AIDS, it critiques the overarching and ingrained patriarchal ideologies that are hindering the treatment and prevention of this disease. The article seeks to examine Magona’s text as uncovering the lack of appropriate knowledge about HIV/AIDS, and the silencing of South African women in the articulation or dissemination of this disease-related knowledge. The article argues that Magona’s text emphasizes the delinking of taboos and highlights the necessity of the South African community’s engagement at micro and macro levels regarding HIV/AIDS. This engagement reflects an epistemic responsibility that is crucial to reducing the dreadful impact of this illness from both cultural and structural perspectives.


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Author Biography

Rajendra Chetty, University of the Western Cape





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How to Cite

Karmakar, G., & Chetty, R. (2023). Epistemic Responsibility and Community Engagement in Sindiwe Magona’s Beauty’s Gift. ELOPE: English Language Overseas Perspectives and Enquiries, 20(2), 65–79. https://doi.org/10.4312/elope.20.2.65-79