A Narrative Inquiry into the Experiences of sub-Saharan African Immigrants Living with HIV in Alberta, Canada

  • Author / Creator
    dela Cruz, Aniela Marie Manalo
  • Current epidemiological data show an increasing number of men and women from sub-Saharan African countries who are living with HIV in Alberta. New cases of HIV between 1999 and 2008 among both men and women in the heterosexual (endemic) risk category have increased. In 2008, one Alberta HIV Clinic estimated that 20% of new HIV-positive clients had come from HIV-endemic countries; this had increased from 1% in 1998. There is little known about the experiences of African immigrants living with HIV in Alberta communities. The purpose of this narrative inquiry was to understand the experiences of sub-Saharan African immigrants living with HIV in Alberta. Clandinin and Connelly’s (2000) form of narrative inquiry was the qualitative methodology used for this study. Following the collection of field texts through in-depth conversations and field journal writing, narrative accounts were co-composed with research participants. Three participants’ narrative accounts are presented in the dissertation and center on stories of childhood, life before living in Canada, coming to Canada, living in Canada, receiving an HIV diagnosis and living with HIV. A unique researcher-participant relationship allowed for extended collaboration and the development of a close researcher-participant relationship, with relational ethics at the center. Narrative threads that resonated between participant accounts included: stories to live by (narrative forms of identity), including the search for narrative coherence and living in the midst of transition; found and chosen communities; and narrative interlappings. This dissertation concludes with a chapter discussing the personal, social and practical significance of this study: the phenomenon of narrative inquiry, the social landscapes that shape experience and stories to live by, and new possibilities that nurses may attend to.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Spring 2014
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Greene, Saara (Faculty of Social Sciences, McMaster University)
    • Worthington, Catherine (School of Public Health and Social Policy, University of Victoria)
    • Ogilvie, Linda (Faculty of Nursing)
    • Richter, Solina (Faculty of Nursing)