lesleylawson2Lesley Lawson is a London-based writer, photographer and filmmaker, currently specialising in health and HIV. Past work includes media work for South African non-governmental organizations during the apartheid era; publications on women, HIV and general development topics; reportage; and educational and broadcast documentaries. Current work includes communications for the UK government's programme on health and HIV in South Africa.

Quiet moments in the struggle

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My new book Quiet Moments in the struggle is looking for a home.

Quiet Moments is a memoir of sorts, combining images and stories from my life as a documentary photographer and film maker in South Africa.

Watch this space!


Side Effects


Side Effects, the story of AIDS in South Africa. Lesley Lawson, Double Storey 2008.

"Reading this book has boosted my immune system immensely." Lucky Mazibiuko, Sowetan columnist.

"The book successfully distils 25 years of political responses, newspaper reports and major court battles into a punchy and highly relevant summary of why South Africa, a relatively well-resourced country with some infrastructure, should have such high infection rates. The answer lies beyond the one-word summary: Manto." Sunday Times, South Africa.


Living with HIV, 1996

Siza's story

Nonhlanhla's story

Peter's story

Ndwedwe adoption

Mashayabhuqe - A 52-minute film that described the impact of the HIV epidemic on the communities across the country, highlighting the effect the epidemic was already having in urban and rural areas, and giving voice to people living with HIV in all income, race and geographical groups. It also included interviews with organisational leaders who were trying to understand the future impact of HIV on their work.

More about Mashayabhuqe