• The Social Construction Of Unique Caring Relationships: Metaphors And Descriptors Of Aids And Mutuality In Buddy Dyads

      Maday, Renee; McWherter, Pamela (1997)
      This study explores how acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) is socially constructed in buddy dyads as revealed by the written metaphors and descriptors supplied by cultural members through a survey instrument. A buddy dyad consists of a volunteer caregiver and a person with AIDS (PWA). The metaphors and descriptors that the buddies recounted provide an understanding of these special relationships and the social construction of AIDS in this uniquely affected population.<p> Analysis revealed that AIDS is most often constructed as integral to community and activism in the AIDS Culture. The buddy relationship is most often constructed as a friendship rather than a caregiver/client relationship. The participants also revealed that buddy dyads are both life-affirming and significant relationships. The examination of buddies' metaphors and descriptors further suggests that their lived experience with AIDS is uniquely different than the construction of AIDS most often made by the media and the rest of U.S. culture. <p>