Voice Language in Documentary Films on HIV/AIDS Geared Towards Behavior Change Among Rural Dwellers in Kisumu County, Kenya
When there are literary challenges, the effectiveness of film as an educational prevention tool exhibits improved long-term retention, perceivably, through effective voice language use in BCC films. This study intended to identify, analyse and interrogate the significance of voice languages as used in BCC Films geared towards risk behaviour change in documentaries on HIV/AIDS among rural dwellers of North West Kisumu. In doing so, four Kenyan BCC documentary films on HIV/AIDS, Deadly Catch (2005) by David Gough, Aids Prevalence in Nyanza (2013) by Baraka Karama, Kitoweo Cha Mauti (2016) by Cecilia Wakesho, and Fishers of Pain (2016) by Timothy Otieno were analysed for their choice and use of voice language in advancing BCC. The Audience Reception Theory and Entertainment-Education (E-E) for Behavioural Change Model were adopted as the frame of reference through which the study was anchored. This study employed the Sequential Mixed Methods Research Design in which priority was given to qualitative data collection and analysis, whose findings informed the development of quantitative data collection and analysis tools. Using purposive sampling, three Community Groups in North West Kisumu were selected. A sample of 89 and 14 participants were drawn for the survey and FGDs respectively. Despite qualitative findings having established that the bulk of Kenyan HIV/AIDS BCC documentaries depict multilingual circumstances, statistical findings established that English took up the larger share (57%) of the verbal sound track. It was then established that message comprehension is a big challenge to those audiences that do not fully understand English and Kiswahili. The study also observed that with regard to the voice language used, audiences often strove to understand the documentaries either through individual efforts or assistance from others. While the findings confirmed that several factors lead to certain choice of voice languages in BCC documentary films, the dominant of these factors were identified as producer/director style and preference in production aesthetics which often overlooks audience preferences. One surprising finding in this regard was that despite a majority (86.8%) of the audiences preferring a mix of languages, most BCC documentaries had more English hence hampering comprehension as was evidenced through re-narration and subsequent application of acquired knowledge to their everyday life experiences and expectations. The findings of this study also assert the hypothesis that voice language used in has a significant effect on communicating that intended message through the BCC documentary. Finally, this study concludes that Voice language plays a crucial role in enhancing an audience’s comprehension especially of change messages, with an almost near equal measure of weight as Mise-en-scene. The findings of this study lays a foundation for debate on the essence of the verbal sound track in Kenyan BCC documentaries and films. The recommendations of this study base on the fact that, understanding factors related to HIV/AIDS transmission, behaviour and practices is invaluable in designing appropriate BCC initiatives.