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Activism by People with HIV/AIDS
In the context of social movements in health, those most affected by health problems and social issues have been encouraged to organize in order to question and challenge the expertise exercised by health professionals and state officials. ... The idea of "health from below" suggests that with the threat of colonization and institutional control, women, people with disabilities, gay men and lesbians, and people with HIV/AIDS are collectively realizing the need to struggle for self-determination and control of their bodies and their lives. The objective of this book is to understand this history of activism and organizing ... .
Over the last twenty-five years, there have been identifiable shifts in the conceptualization of the epidemic. Initially the idea of HIV as a plague affecting stigmatized and marginal groups predominated. Later, public officials and institutional authorities recognized the epidemic as public health crisis. Once effective medications emerged, HIV/AIDS became a treatable disease. Most recently, with the growing awareness of the epidemic around the world, HIV/AIDS is a global pandemic. Over this time, despite the different trajectories of the epidemic, HIV positive communities have continued to initiate strategies of self-empowerment and community development designed to shape what it means to be involved in the decisions that affect their lives, and to "live, survive and thrive" with HIV/AIDS. – From the Introduction
James Gillett is an associate professor at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. He is jointly appointed in the Sociology Department and the Department of Health, Aging and Society. Dr. Gillett is a member of the McMaster HIV/AIDS Social Research Group.
244 pp / 5.25 x 8.25 format / 2011 copyright Paperback ISBN: 978-0-9826597-7-9, $34.95