Audience construction and AIDS education efforts: Exploring communication assumptions of public health interventions
Southwell, B. (2000). Audience construction and AIDS education efforts: Exploring communication assumptions of public health interventions. Critical Public Health, 10(3), 313-319. DOI: 10.1080/713658253
Anderson's (1996) notion of an analytic audience offers a fruitful organizing concept for discourse analysis regarding health communication interventions. An analytic audience in this context might be conceived as an entity produced by health practitioners as they describe intervention development. In order to illustrate this idea, the present paper briefly explores examples of discourse on educational efforts related to AIDS. Analysis in this vein might suggest implications regarding the relationships between health organizations and the individuals they ostensibly serve through interventions that may not be obvious from other perspectives. In so far as such realizations are worthwhile, such analysis is not idle perusal of arcane documents but rather is vital work for public health researchers. Moreover, focusing on discourse concerning constructed audiences is one way to approach the current lack of reflexive inquiry among public health researchers.