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AIDS in the UKThe Making of Policy, 1981-1994$
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Virginia Berridge

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198204725

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198204725.001.0001

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‘AIDS Missionaries’: Self-Help and the Initial Response to AIDS

‘AIDS Missionaries’: Self-Help and the Initial Response to AIDS

(p.13) 1 ‘AIDS Missionaries’: Self-Help and the Initial Response to AIDS
AIDS in the UK

Virginia Berridge

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses voluntarism and self-help after the initial responses, among gays, but also among the emergent scientific, clinical, and epidemiological specialisms. AIDS policy-making in the UK has passed through four distinct phases. AIDS emerged as a new policy arena. The early response to AIDS in the UK was essentially a voluntarist one. British gays with early knowledge took steps to establish the first formal structures to respond. Sex, and a greater emphasis on the pursuit of sexual freedom and choice, was a bond that bound this male community together. The organized gay response to AIDS began to heighten, and also significantly to change focus at the same time. Gay organizations began to focus their efforts around AIDS. The Gay Medical Association, launched three years previously, set up an AIDS working-groups and they began educational work firstly by the drafting of a leaflet.

Keywords:   AIDS, self-help, voluntarism, sexual freedom, Gay Medical Association

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