TV’s HIV Scandal
25 October 2011
Media’s influence on the general public has been an ongoing phenomenon for many years, whether it be as a means of inculcating values or alerting us to everyday societal norms.
Scandal (a local soapie) seems to be one of those kinds of media, playing on the heart strings of its viewers with stories centred around human suffering and every day struggles of the average South African.
With a viewership of around 2 million people daily, social responsibility is high on Scandal’s! list of priorities as is their portrayal of an HIV-positive character (Palesa).
This week The Sowetan newspaper’s entertainment section has run an article on Refilwe Madumo and her character Palesa. In the article Madumo gives insight into the roles and responsibilities associated with playing such an influential character and the effect that it has had on her everyday life.
Her responsibility comes in the form of being a tool of understanding and interpretation for her audience. For those that look to her as a source of HIV education, Madumo’s character and the production team of Scandal! are faced with the task of representing facts about HIV that are accurate and well researched.
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