To commemorate World AIDS Day, Connextions celebrates four seminal works that center on both the epidemic and the communities most affected by it.
Victory Deferred: How AIDS Changed Gay Life In America
By John-Manuel Andriote
University of Chicago, 570 pp., $23.00
Based on hundreds of interviews and national responses to the epidemic, Journalist John-Manuel Andriote’s acclaimed work chronicles the effects of the disease on the gay rights movement, from the 1970s to the post-AIDS community of today. This brand new edition of the 1999 hardcover original offers an updated and expanded narrative and institutional history of the crisis that defined a generation of activism.
Andriote: Author Website
The Epidemic: A Global History of AIDS
By Jonathan Engel
Smithsonian, 400 pp., $28.95
Science, politics and culture come to a head in Jonathan Engel’s 2006 dramatic look at the weakness and heroism surrounding one of history’s deadliest outbreaks. Engel, a medical historian, takes readers on a journey from the pathogen’s first appearance to the battles waged in third-world countries today.
Engel: Academic Website
Chronicle of a Plague, Revisited: AIDS and Its Aftermath
By Andrew Holleran
Da Capo, 264 pp., $16.00
Andrew Holleran’s dark collection of columns first published by the author in the 80s, is set amidst a backdrop of tragic uncertainty, illustrating in vivid detail how the urban gay community met the brutal reality of the burgeoning epidemic. This 2008 edition of Holleran’s original compendium of essays, released in 1988 as Ground Zero, gives a striking firsthand look into a world many remain unaware of to this day.
Bookslut Feature: 2007 Interview with Andrew Holleran
And the Band Played On: Politics, People, and the AIDS Epidemic, 20th-Anniversary Edition
By Randy Shilts
St. Martins, 630 pp., $18.99
Written by then San Francisco Chronicle reporter Randy Shilts, the international bestseller is hailed one of the most essential books of our time. In this 2007 edition of the 1987 original, Shilts reveals why the disease was initially ignored by the nation's most trusted institutions and allowed to spread throughout the population unchecked. Chronicling the early years of the crisis, And the Band Played On is considered the first major book about AIDS.
SFGate Audio Podcast: Remembering Randy Shilts
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