Annotated Bibliography

Unit 1

Blair, C. & Michel, N. (2007). The AIDS Memorial Quilt and the Contemporary Culture of Public Commemoration. Rhetoric & Public Affairs 10(4), 595-626. Michigan State University Press. Retrieved February 13, 2018, from Project MUSE database.


Carole Blair, a professor of rhetorical studies at UNC, and Neil Michel, Chief Strategy Officer at Wire Stone, a digital marketing agency, wrote the article “The AIDS Memorial Quilt and the Contemporary Culture of Public Commemoration” to detail two different types of memorial and their impact on future projects. The authors quote from other scholarly articles to offer supporting evidence for their claims. The authors wrote this article in an effort to better understand why and how American culture has transitioned to the obelisks and temples honoring singular people (Washington, Lincoln) or the ideal of a person (Unknown Soldier) to those honoring a large group – as the authors would write, the “democratization” of memorials. The intended audience is readers of the journal Rhetoric & Public Affairs, published by the Michigan State University press for those interested in politics and diplomacy. History students studying late twentieth century American history would also find this article intriguing for its in-depth overview of monument culture in the United States post-Vietnam.

This source provides insight on the contrast between the Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial and the AIDS Quilt. Despite both memorializing fallen Americans, the AIDS Quilt is starkly different from every other memorial in Washington, D.C. Where the Vietnam Memorial individualizes by naming all of those fallen, the AIDS Quilt does so by “individual difference.” Even panels left nameless clearly represent individual, different people. However, the use of this source is largely limited to this section. Other sections discuss the effects of the AIDS quilt, which does not fit the subject of my research very well. However, what it does provide is quite useful, as it juxtaposes the honor provided to victims of war and the ignominy faced by victims of AIDS.


Mahajan, A. P., Sayles, J. N., Patel, V. A., Remien, R. H., Ortiz, D., Szekeres, G., & Coates, T. J. (2008). Stigma in the HIV/AIDS epidemic: A review of the literature and recommendations for the way forward. AIDS (London, England), 22(Suppl 2), S67–S79.


Anish P. Mahajan, chief medical officer at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, et alii, wrote this paper on the influence of stigma as a barrier to treatment for HIV / AIDS. They offered solutions to “four challenges that [they] believe represent critical next steps in ameliorating the devastating effects of [HIV/AIDS] stigma.” Their goal is to reduce the impact of social stigma on the treatment of patients with HIV. The authors cite previous scholarly articles and lay out their methodology to prove their credibility. The intended audience is other doctors, as it is published on PubMed. Doctors seeking to assuage patients’ fear about social pressures which result from an HIV positive diagnosis might consult this source.

This source is a scholarly paper on previous literature on HIV/AIDS and potential improvements that could be made by the medical community. It is, however, nonpersonal and secondary. This could be a disadvantage as it would only be useful for general commentary. However, it could certainly contain useful and essential information.

Fox, Maggie (2016). The Fight Against AIDS Stigma Is Far from Over, Activists Say. NBC News. Retrieved 15 February 2018, from

Maggie Fox, a reporter for NBC News, wrote this article on why the HIV “pandemic” continues across America. The author interviews several primary sources – people affected by AIDS, to build credibility. This article was intended for two purposes: firstly, to make money for NBC, but also to use their wide reach to spread publicity about the continuing AIDS epidemic. The intended audience is the average American browsing the news. Anyone interested by the plight of AIDS victims might visit this page, or even someone simply bored and paging across NBC’s website.

This source represents primary evidence via the interviewees on the article. Unlike the previous two, this does not come from an academic journal. However, it is more specific, provides good anecdotes, and is more focused on the idea that the social environment of the United States allowed AIDS to run rampant and take hold. If this argument is to be made, the experiences of these people will be invaluable.

Hiskes, Jonathan (2015, March). Digitizing the AIDS Quilt to Fight Cultural Amnesia. Retrieved 15 February 2018, from balsamo-digitizing-aids-quilt-cultural-amnesia

Jonathan Hiskes, communications director at the Simpson Center for the Humanities, a nonprofit which supports interdisciplinary research with funding, wrote this article where he argues for the importance of digitalizing the AIDS Quilt. The author interviews many of the people involved with uploading the Quilt to the internet, giving insight on the opinions of people directly connected to the project. The author’s intent is positive publicity for their institution. The intended audience are those who follow the activities and events of the Simpson Center. Anyone interested in AIDS, or even 1980s American culture might find this article useful, as it provides good insight on the culture of the time.

This source may be useful mostly for the insight of those responsible for uploading the quilt. It speaks of the necessity of humanizing victims, as it is all too easy to lump AIDS victims into a group (or groups) of undesirables. By forcing the American public to confront the reality that people were dying, not just the by-now notorious 4Hs (homosexuals, heroin addicts, people reliant on hemo-derivative blood transfusion, and Haitans) which are easily vilified.

Capozzola, C. (2002). A Very American Epidemic: Memory Politics and Identity Politics in the AIDS Memorial Quilt, 1985-1993. Radical History Review 82(1), 91-109. Duke University Press. Retrieved February 16, 2018, from Project MUSE database.

Chistopher Capozzola, a professor of political and legal history at MIT, argues in his article that the AIDS quilt emerged from the failure of traditional methods to memorialize victims of AIDS. The author’s credentials lead the reader to believe that this is a credible source. The intended audience is people interested in a different take on history. This article could be useful for those studying the politics of the late 1980s and early 1990s.

This article could be used for its ideas on the origin of the AIDS Quilt, its self-proclaimed lack of a political message, and the pressures that led to the creation of the Quilt. The argument that the Quilt was created because social norms were insufficient or simply unwilling to accommodate victims of HIV/AIDS is certainly interesting. It works well in conjunction with Hiskes’ article, which argued that humanization is a must, by establishing the causes and the social climate which led to the apathy, or even antipathy, towards those afflicted in the first place.

Koenig, S., Ivers, L., Pace, S., Destine, R., Leandre, F., Grandpierre, R., … Pape, J. (2010). Successes and challenges of HIV treatment programs in Haiti: aftermath of the earthquake. HIV Therapy4(2), 145–160.

Serena Koenig, an assosciate professor of medicine at Harvard, and her colleagues wrote this paper on the effectiveness of anti-HIV programs in Haiti. It offers statistical evidence on the declining prevalence of HIV/AIDS in the impoverished country, comparing it to the developed world. The author’s purpose is to inform on progress made in Haiti as well as provide suggestions for future endeavors in other locations. The intended audience are those in charge of global HIV/AIDS policy. Others that might find the paper useful include charitable groups seeking to learn how best to utilize their resources.

This source was initially found to try to learn how effective a modern response to HIV/AIDS was. However, it does not really fit with my new topic. If I were writing a history on AIDS treatment, I would probably come back to this source.

Abbott, F., (2016) ACT UP and the AIDS Crisis. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America,

Franky Abbott, the Curation and Education strategist of the Digital Public Library of America, compiled these primary sources associated with the activist group ACT UP. This source is simply a database of images with some kind of reference to the group ACT UP. The purpose of the text is to provide an easy reference set of sources for researchers. The intended audience seems to be students. Others that might find the source useful include reporters looking for background reference information.

I sought out this source in an effort to detail the early years of AIDS activism in the United States. It could be useful as an extra primary source, but I have decided to focus on the French group AIDES and the NAMES Project instead. It may remain useful as an extra point in the conclusion.

Summers, T., Kates, J. (2004) Trends in U.S. Government Funding for HIV/AIDS.

Todd Summers, a senior adviser of the Global Health Policy Center, and Jennifer Kates, a Vice President at the Kaiser Family Foundation, wrote this article on the changes in American government funding for the fight against AIDS. The authors cite official government documents for their evidence. Their intent is to inform, as the paper provides minimal additional insight besides raw data. The intended audience is likely employees of the Kaiser Family Foundation. Others that might find the data useful include those that want information on the spending of the United States Government.

This source provides useful hard data with regard to the US Government’s emphasis on AIDS. The greater the (proportional) funding, the greater importance the government puts on defeating the HIV/AIDS epidemic. I will use this source to emphasize the fact that AIDS activist groups successfully pressured the government to prioritize the defeat of AIDS.

Mustich, E. (2011) A History of AIDS Hysteria.

Emma Mustich, a reporter for Salon, wrote an article on the history of AIDS hysteria. She cites other articles from sources such as TIME. The primary intent, of course, is to earn clicks and therefore money from readers; the secondary intent is to inform about history. The intended audience is the internet. This information could be useful for other more modern activist groups seeking to find out how to effectively counter hysteria.

The source provides a retrospective view on how the American public reacted to AIDS. It will also be useful as a gateway to the many sources she cites. I could use it to illustrate the backdrop on which the various AIDS activist groups arose.

The AIDS Memorial Quilt. Retrieved from

There is no author published for this source, but it is a page on the NAMES Project’s website, which makes it a reliable primary source. It does not need to cite other sources, as it is from the group I am researching. The intent is to provide the NAMES Project’s views on itself and its history. The intended audience are those who are interested in the work the NAMES Project does. The site could also be useful for those who are looking to submit a quilt panel of their own.

This source will be useful as a first-party introspective on the history of AIDS activism in the United States. It will probably be used to cement secondary views on the AIDS Quilt. It would solidify the point the second party is trying to make.

Boffey, P. (1987) Long-Running Debate on AIDS: How Well Did Americans Respond?

A Timeline of HIV and AIDS.