Mongo Women's Survival Strategies in the Context of HIV and AIDS: Revisiting the book of Ruth


Democratic Republic of Congo

How to Cite

Kondemo, M. M. (2023). Mongo Women’s Survival Strategies in the Context of HIV and AIDS: Revisiting the book of Ruth . Old Testament Essays, 36(2), 412–427. Retrieved from


The past two decades have experienced a growing female labour participation in the Democratic Republic of Congo due in part to the weakening of men’s absolute earning power and the increased rates of unemployment and underemployment. Women’s growing earning power and commitment to the paid workforce together with the stagnation of men's social mobility make some families more financially dependent on women. As such, women are engaging in any kind of business or activity, which sometimes put their lives at risks. Due to gender inequities, women seek favour from men in order to succeed, making them vulnerable to HIV and AIDS. The story of Ruth in Ruth 2–3, in which she is forced to go out to find food for herself and Naomi is similar to that of many Congolese women who are forced by poverty to go out and offer their bodies to men at the risk of being infected by HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. Therefore, a gender-sensitive reading of the Bible of women’s experiences can lead to the emancipation of women, especially Mongo women in their struggle for survival.


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