Every once in a while I stumble across something that just captures my interest and I become addicted to finding out as much information as possible about it. (Randomly, the last time this happened was after MJ died. I became totally absorbed with watching all of his old music videos and reading up about his life. Random, I know.)
I just read the book “And The Band Played On” for book club and became fascinated with learning more and more about the beginnings of the AIDS epidemic. While reading, I wanted to talk to anyone and everyone who was around when AIDS broke out in the early 80s. I Wikipedia-ed some key players in the book ad nauseum and recently watched some related movies on Netflix so I could absorb more information.
If you are at all interested in learning more about the history of the AIDS epidemic, I’d recommend the following:
- And The Band Played On by Randy Shilts: A lengthy but fascinating read. Shilts chronicles very detailed stories of individuals in science, politics, public health and the gay community at beginning of the AIDS epidemic. Warning: it’ll get you pretty fired up!
- And The Band Played On Movie Adaptation: HBO created a movie based on the book in 1993 with a lot of major Hollywood players. They obviously couldn’t portray all of the details from such a long book, but it was a pretty thorough recap.
- RadioLab’s “Patient Zero” Podcast: Interesting podcast that “dives into a molecular detective story to pinpoint the beginning of the AIDS, and we re-imagine the moment the virus that caused the global pandemic sprang to life.”
- Philadelphia Movie: Released in 1993, this was the 2nd Hollywood film (after ATBPO) to discuss AIDS. In addition to being a good movie, it is fascinating to see how the topic of AIDS (and homosexuality) was discussed almost 20 years ago compared to today. It’s amazing how far we’ve come.
Our book club meets tonight and I can’t wait to talk about this! Love, Nik