The aim of this project is to develop a more grounded, robust historical context for the emergence of HIV. While some hypotheses for the emergence of HIV have been suggested, they have been offered primarily by biomedical researchers with limited familiarity with African history. The project will offer a corrective to the errors and misconceptions concerning the historical context in which HIV emerged and developed into a global pandemic. It will subsequently develop insights from African history concerning great ape hunting, the introduction of colonial rule, urbanization, human migration, prostitution, and medical campaigns. The research group is comprised specialists in various aspects of African history and anthropology.
Collaborators include William S Schneider and Didier Gondola (Indiana University), Stephanie Rupp (City University of New York), Guillaume Lachenal (Université de Paris Diderot), Jorge Varanda (University of Coimbra).