Overview

The moving and powerful story that stunned South Africa: Edwin Cameron - the first public office holder to disclose he was living with AIDS - writes about his decision, his experience and the struggle that millions face in seeking treatment. Part memoir, part thought-provoking analysis, this book is a vivid exploration of what HIV/AIDS means - for Edwin Cameron as he faces the possibility of lingering death, for all of us in facing one of the foremost challenges of our time. He explains his decision to go public ...
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Witness to AIDS

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Overview

The moving and powerful story that stunned South Africa: Edwin Cameron - the first public office holder to disclose he was living with AIDS - writes about his decision, his experience and the struggle that millions face in seeking treatment. Part memoir, part thought-provoking analysis, this book is a vivid exploration of what HIV/AIDS means - for Edwin Cameron as he faces the possibility of lingering death, for all of us in facing one of the foremost challenges of our time. He explains his decision to go public and to accept anti-retroviral treatment, in a country beset by "denialism". He takes a critical look at what is so different about African AIDS; at the divergent reactions of Mandela and Mbeki to the crisis; the role of international pharmaceutical companies; the intricacies of "race, sex, death and Africa"; and the impact of South Africa’s largest activist group, the Treatment Action Campaign. Along the way we come to know a number of remarkable people, among others Gugu Dlamini, killed for owning up to HIV infection; Simon Nkuli, brave activist; the unnamed gardener who "died of shame"; and Zackie Achmat, trusted friend and wily strategist. Cameron integrates the intensely personal with scientific research and a considered examination of the politics and cultural forces at play, particularly in Africa, in a touching human story which ultimately speaks of hope and possibility.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This book will be a major contribution by a courageous South African towards that quest for a better life for all."--Nelson Mandela

"If truth is beauty, this relentlessly brilliant and hopeful book is beautiful. It is a text to live by, if we aspire to the possibility of a better life for all…in a world widely threatened by HIV/Aids." --Nadine Gordimr, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature 1991

"Cameron addresses the taboo questions of race, sexual orientation, poverty and stigma in the context of the HIV/Aids epidemic, writing almost always from a personal perspective, but with an unconditional commitment to social justice." -- Zackie Achmat, internationally renowned activist

"The HIV/AIDS epidemic has produced a few thoughtful and quiet heroes. Judge Edwin Cameron is one of them. His thought-provoking memoir is a breathtakingly beautiful story of our times. Cameron's stunning prose draws us into the heartbreak and the triumph that is AIDS in South Africa, and his honest confrontation with the moral and physical reality of AIDS and its meaning for his own body and the body politic informs our hearts and minds. It is a true privilege to share this gifted and compassionate man's thoughts and insights, his gripping exploration of black/white, positive/negative, gay/straight, stigma and compassion. The fearless gaze he casts into his own soul lifts his story beyond the AIDS epidemic in one place and time and makes it a timeless gift for the spiritual renewal of us all." --Susan Hunter, Independent Consultant to world health organizations

"Cameron tells a the story of both his own travail and South Africa's wider plight with the kind of admirable honesty that he urges others to adopt."--Oxford Today, Hilary Issue, 2006

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780624063797
  • Publisher: Tafelberg
  • Publication date: 4/24/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 248
  • Sales rank: 1,158,571
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Edwin Cameron is a justice in South Africa's Constitutional Court, and a former justice in Supreme Court of Appeal. He is an internationally respected human rights lawyer and AIDS activist.

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Read an Excerpt

The moving and powerful story that stunned South Africa: Edwin Cameron - the first public office holder to disclose he was living with AIDS - writes about his decision, his experience and the struggle that millions face in seeking treatment.

Part memoir, part thought-provoking analysis, this book is a vivid exploration of what HIV/AIDS means - for Edwin Cameron as he faces the possibility of lingering death, for all of us in facing one of the foremost challenges of our time.

He explains his decision to go public and to accept anti-retroviral treatment, in a country beset by "denialism". He takes a critical look at what is so different about African AIDS; at the divergent reactions of Mandela and Mbeki to the crisis; the role of international pharmaceutical companies; the intricacies of "race, sex, death and Africa"; and the impact of South Africa’s largest activist group, the Treatment Action Campaign.

Along the way we come to know a number of remarkable people, among others Gugu Dlamini, killed for owning up to HIV infection; Simon Nkuli, brave activist; the unnamed gardener who "died of shame"; and Zackie Achmat, trusted friend and wily strategist.

Cameron integrates the intensely personal with scientific research and a considered examination of the politics and cultural forces at play, particularly in Africa, in a touching human story which ultimately speaks of hope and possibility.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Foreword by Nelson Mandela

Second Chances

Just a Virus, Just a Disease

Race, Sex and Death in Africa

The Tragedy of AIDS Denialism in South Africa

A Judge is Called as a Witness to AIDS

"We are not the Red Cross" - Patents, Profits and Death from AIDS (with Nathan Geffen)

Poor Treatment - Justice for Poor People (with Nathan Geffen)

Choices

Notes

Index

Index of Persons

Acknowledgements

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