And the Band Played On: Politics, People and the AIDS Epidemic

And the Band Played On: Politics, People and the AIDS Epidemic

4.6 40
by Randy Shilts
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

By the time Rock Hudson's death in 1985 alerted all America to the danger of the AIDS epidemic, the disease had spread across the nation, killing thousands of people and emerging as the greatest health crisis of the 20th century. America faced a troubling question: What happened? How was this epidemic allowed to spread so far before it was taken seriously? In…  See more details below

Overview

By the time Rock Hudson's death in 1985 alerted all America to the danger of the AIDS epidemic, the disease had spread across the nation, killing thousands of people and emerging as the greatest health crisis of the 20th century. America faced a troubling question: What happened? How was this epidemic allowed to spread so far before it was taken seriously? In answering these questions, Shilts weaves weaves the disparate threads into a coherent story, pinning down every evasion and contradiction at the highest levels of the medical, political, and media establishments.

Shilts shows that the epidemic spread wildly because the federal government put budget ahead of the nation's welfare; health authorities placed political expediency before the public health; and scientists were often more concerned with international prestige than saving lives. Against this backdrop, Shilts tells the heroic stories of individuals in science and politics, public health and the gay community, who struggled to alert the nation to the enormity of the danger it faced. And the Band Played On is both a tribute to these heroic people and a stinging indictment of the institutions that failed the nation so badly.

Read More

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
SOC SCI This shocking and illuminating account by the best-selling author of Conduct Unbecoming: Gays and Lesbians in the U.S. Military (Audio Reviews, LJ 8/93) remains one of the most important books of the last two decades. Beginning with the alleged ``pa tient zero''--a French Canadian flight at tendant whose coast-to-coast liaisons were pivotal in spreading the AIDS virus throughout the United States--Shilts documents the epidemic's first onslaught, as well as the attendant reactions (or nonreactions) by the media, national health organizations, mainstream America, and the gay community. Although the audiobook was originally released in 1988, a recent HBO original movie based on the book and the success of Conduct Unbecoming should revive interest in it. Actor Willem Dafoe narrates with calm assurance, and Shilts reads a new afterword in which he points out that the band continues to play. Until an unabridged version is available, all libraries should have a copy of this seminal work.-- Mark Annichiarico, ``Library Journal''

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780140232219
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/01/1993
Pages:
672

Meet the Author

Randy Shilts was born in 1951, in Davenport, Iowa. One of the first openly gay journalists hired at a major newspaper, he worked for the San Francisco Chronicle for thirteen years. He died of AIDS in 1994 at his home in the Sonoma County redwoods in California. He was the author of The Mayor of Castro Street: The Life and Times of Harvey Milk (1982), And the Band Played On: Politics, People and the AIDS Epidemic (1987), and Conduct Unbecoming: Lesbians and Gays in the U.S. Military (1993). He also wrote extensively for many major newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Newsweek, Esquire, The Los Angeles Times, and The Advocate. And the Band Played On was made into a docudrama that was broadcast on HBO in 1993.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

And the Band Played On: Politics, People, and the AIDS Epidemic, 20th Anniversary Edition 4.6 out of 5 based on 2 ratings. 40 reviews.
mockturtle More than 1 year ago
While I learned more about a the gay lifestyle than I really wanted to know, this taut, fascinating account of the AIDS crisis kept me rapt from start to finish. The author's journalistic skills serve him very well as he traces the chronology of the epidemic through a group of friends and their personal involvement in the crisis, intertwined with the medical and political entities attempting to identify the problem. As the author clearly shows, political conflicts within the gay and medical communities, as well as the denial and inertia of government, resulted in delaying solutions to stem the spread of the virus. Great read.
JonnyD More than 1 year ago
Absolutley brilliant chronicling of the first decade of the HIV/AIDS crisis. Demonstrates in no uncertain terms how our society missed the boat by letting early opportunities to curb the spread of HIV. Fascinating look at the social and governmental response, both in the U.S. and around the world.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An incredible look back at a frightening and frustrating time. Check out the documentary "How to Survive a Plague" - inspiring.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the first book I read by Randy Shilts, but upon completion I immediately read the rest of his books. Randy Shilts is an incredible artist who used his talents to bring to the world the staggering and horrific truth about the AIDS epidemic. While this book focuses on the devastating effect that aids had on the gay and lesbian community, it is a book that is newsworthy even today and relevant for all readers. For people seeking to learn more about the homosexual community, many leaders of the gay community who were lost, leaving the community for decades without leadership, appear in this book. Those people include Cleve Jones to Bill Krause to Larry Kramer. This book contains the most trustworthy accounts of a historic time than any novel I know, which was sourced using journalistic methods. In writing this book, Randy Shilts not only wrote himself into literary history, he became a hero of the gay community.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was young during this time period and it gives an interesting perspective and allot more background to the AIDS epidemic.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Easy to read and very detailed. A must read for anyone who works in the healthcare industry.
Drewda More than 1 year ago
Best book ever. I read it years ago and it has stuck with me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago