A New Life: Being a Gay Man in the Era of HIV

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University Press of America, 1997 - Biography & Autobiography - 177 pages
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A New Life is a collection of essays and true stories about gay men. The portrayal of gay life presented in the book captures the intricate undercurrents in the age of AIDS: the anguish, disillusion and disappointment of HIV-positive youth, electricity between an HIV-positive man and his negative lover, the journey of a mother who lost her son to AIDS and why it is so difficult to be gay and proud in the inner city. The principal characters of the book the young and old, Black and White, HIV-positive and HIV-negative reflect the diversity of the gay community and the varying degrees to which gay men have been affected by HIV. Essays included in the book provide a background for the personal accounts of gay life. Large-scale information presented in these essays were derived from the data collected by the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study, the largest sexual-and social-behavior survey ever funded by the federal government. The book shows how easy it is at present for a young gay man to become first a victim and subsequently endanger the lives of his fellow men. The seemingly complex picture of recent HIV infections would become simpler if we were to consider the link between sexual ethics and the transmission of HIV. Could we interpret an HIV-negative partner's willingness to engage in unprotected sex as acceptance of consequences? If a man who might be carrying HIV does not use a condom during sexual intercourse with a partner who might be HIV negative, is he being 'unreasonably negligent'? It appears that group values that emphasize protecting sex partners from HIV may be our best weapon against the spread of AIDS to the next generation of gay men. A New Life reveals insights into the impact of HIV on the relationships gay men form with each other and with their parents. The true stories presented in this book indicate that, confronted with a small but vicious virus, many of us, gay and straight, have reassessed those cultural values that divide rather than unite us. Those who have been hit with the hurricane force of AIDS have opened a path toward a new social order in which homosexuality is understood to be neither a choice nor a disease, and showing respect, love, and affection to an individual, regardless of his or her sexual orientation, is a norm."
 

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Contents

BEFORE AIDS
1
Unreasonable Negligence
2
Scot in His Previous Life
7
Sexual Behavior of Gay Men in the Early 1980s
11
HOW THIS NEW LIFE STARTED
13
I Wanted Him to Accept me into His World
15
I Trusted Him Basically and I Got Burned
19
There You Are I Missed You Honey
28
Paul and Brads Thanksgiving Trip
87
How Eds New Life Started
91
Ed and Scot Talk About Negative Boyfriends
96
Ed and Alan and the Dead Carp
102
AIDS STORIES
111
The Immune System is Like a Language
112
Mrs Brown Says Goodbye to Michael
115
Healing Power of Human Touch
120

I was Honest With Him He Wasnt
38
Each New Infection Bears With It Two Victims
47
GROWING UP GAY
53
Street Mentality in the Inner City
55
Fathers and Their Gay Sons
63
It Is Hard to Be Black Gay and Proud
73
I Cant Even Get a Date Let Alone a Boyfriend
80
ELECTRICITY
85
Scot Has Seven Lives
125
From Agony to Action
140
AFTERWORD
163
Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study and the Sexual Behavior of Gay Men in the HIV Era
165
BIBLIOGRAPHY
175
INDEX
179
Copyright

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About the author (1997)

Aydin T'zeren is Professor and Director of Biomedical Engineering at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

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