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Young adults' perceptions on life prospects and gender roles as important factors to influence health behaviour: a qualitative study from Karachi, Pakistan.

Journal article
Authors Syed Farid-ul Hasnain
Eva Johansson
Ingrid Mogren
Gunilla Krantz
Published in Global journal of health science
Volume 4
Issue 3
Pages 87-97
ISSN 1916-9736
Publication year 2012
Published at Institute of Medicine, School of Public Health and Community Medicine
Pages 87-97
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.5539/gjhs.v4n3p87
Keywords Adolescent, Female, Focus Groups, Gender Identity, Health Behavior, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice, Humans, Male, Pakistan, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, prevention & control, transmission, Young Adult
Subject categories Health Sciences

Abstract

The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore perceptions and expectations of young males and females, in Karachi, Pakistan, regarding their life prospects and gender roles, with resulting implications for health behaviour. The main theme emerging was "Young adults' prospects in life are hampered by psychosocial and gender equality constraints". Gender inequality and the low status of women in society were described as major obstacles to the overall development. Persistent withholding of information to the younger generation on sexual and reproductive health issues was perceived to increase exposure to health risks, particularly sexually transmitted infections (STIs). The present study reveals new discourses on equality among young adults, pointing towards an increasing, sound interaction between the sexes and aspirations for more gender equal relationships. Such views and awareness among the younger generation constitutes a strong force towards change of traditional norms, including reproductive health behaviour, and calls for policy change.

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