HIV/AIDS and the Politics of Caregiving: Surfacing Coalitional Intimacies through the Domestic Archive

Stephen Vider, Assistant Professor of History and Director of the Public History Initiative, Cornell University
Photo: Susan Kuklin, Kachin and Michael at
Michael’s Apartment, 1987. Courtesy of the artist.

The history of HIV/AIDS activism has often been told with a focus on public space. In this talk, Stephen Vider draws from his new book, The Queerness of Home, to trace the history of more private responses to AIDS: in the 1980s and ‘90s, activists not only took to the streets but also ventured into other people’s homes as volunteer caregivers and remade the boundaries of queer community. Vider will also discuss how he translated this history into the exhibition AIDS at Home, featured at the Museum of the City of New York in 2017, and how focusing on private life shifts the stakes of public history.

This talk is being sponsored by the History Department as part of its Colloquium Series, as well as by Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, and American Culture Studies.