The Epidemic Of The Aids Movement Essay

The Epidemic Of The Aids Movement Essay

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The history of the AIDS movement, and with it, the images it brings to mind are set predominantly with images of homosexual men fighting for their rights within the public conscience and the federal government. Division within the ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) community—nationally—was brought on not only by their great many success, but of a division between homosexual men and women (predominantly lesbians and women of color). These HIV+ women viewed anti-AIDS activism from an “intersectional feminist perspective” (Benita Roth 12). These determined women sought to challenge the CDC’s (Center for Disease Control) narrow and biased definition of HIV/AIDS, which said that women were only capable of transmitting the disease, and did not experience its full effects while the research they were employing for this definition was stunted. At the core of this sentiment is a divide: the CDC, the ACT UP community—how gender factors in— along with the perception of a ravaging disease and how it is transmitted and by whom.
In 1992, fifty percent of women infected with AIDS were African American and twenty percent were Latina, according to the Boston Women’s Health Collective. Yet they and many other prominent women’s health groups during that the time felt that the number was much higher on account of the CDC’s definition of HIV/AIDS was so gendered (meaning it was not a disease that manifested itself in women, but was based on men’s bodies) and they had not done the amount of research necessary to have accurate enough statics. Studies such as female to female transmission and in-depth research into uteral infection and transmission were not done and therefore this put women at greater risk for infection and death, yet research was...


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... as men, but were getting less services. Not only did this definition include women but it made them capable of obtaining the medical assistance they needed along with the validation from the federal government that their health too mattered and was at a great of risk. History has shown frequently that when women get together they can create great ripples of change, so was the case in the CDC’s definition of AIDS and how it relates to women. 1990 a watershed year for these activist women, and through protest they were able to quickly secure many of the rights homosexual men were already receiving. Such as greater Social Security coverage and access to medical facilities and information about women’s health. All gender relate to each other and excluding any group of individuals in the name of a majority and societal norms only hinders scientific and social progression.

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