Love and Anger: Essays on AIDS, Activism, and Politics

1st Edition

Peter F Cohen

Routledge
Published June 19, 1998
Reference - 204 Pages
ISBN 9781560239307 - CAT# HW13385

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Summary

Love and Anger: Essays on AIDS, Activism, and Politics is one of the first books to take an interdisciplinary approach to AIDS activism and politics by looking at the literary response to the disease, class issues, and the AIDS activist group ACT UP. Containing both literary analysis and interviews with activists, Love and Anger will help you understand the unique struggle of a certain class of gay men, why the author challenges the belief that ACT UP is a radical group, and why the love story is a central part of the literary response to AIDS.

Examining ACT UP in relation to class issues, Love and Anger discusses how, for certain middle-to upper-middle-class men in the group, ACT UP represented a political response not to fundamental social inequalities, but to the fact that their class position could not benefit them in the absence of an AIDS cure. In addition, you will gain insight into the political methods and goals of ACT UP through interviews with ACT UP members, and find out why the group is sometimes misperceived as being radical, “too gay, ” or “not gay enough.” Different from many other recent works, Love and Anger also combines literary analysis with fieldwork in order to examine the literary response to AIDS from historical and sociological contexts, not just a literary context. Drawing on the fields of anthropology, sociology, political science, history, and literary studies, this text provides you with an original interpretation of a number of novels and plays, including:
  • Afterlife, a novel by Paul Monette, and The Normal Heart, a play by Larry Kramer, both of which envision the return of the class privileges that certain gay men had before AIDS emerged
  • People in Trouble, a novel by Sarah Schulman, which challenges gay men to stop striving for the privileges of straight males and instead to focus on an AIDS movement that will support all groups affected by the epidemic
  • Angels in America, a play by Tony Kushner, which demonstrates the incompatibility of love and political struggle in literature about AIDS

    By examining AIDS activism and politics through the love story and through real-life examples such as ACT UP, Love and Anger integrates fact and fiction in a scholarly, yet comprehensible manner. It will give you a clearer understanding of the issues surrounding AIDS activism and politics, as well as give you insight into the attitudes and feelings of those affected by the disease.

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