Extra-marital sexual partnerships and male friendships in rural Malawi
Extra-marital sexual partnerships (EMSPs) are a major route of HIV/AIDS transmission in sub-Saharan Africa. In this paper, we investigate the roles of two types of male friendships - best friends and friends with whom they talk about AIDS - in determining whether men have EMSPs. Using data from men in rural Malawi, we find that menâ€™s current extra-marital sexual behavior is most closely correlated with their best friendsâ€™, but that the behaviors of both types of friends are associated with menâ€™s subsequent EMSPs. These findings suggest that menâ€™s friendships could be used to help combat the AIDS epidemic.
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