Risky Rhetoric: AIDS and the Cultural Practices of HIV Testing

Risky Rhetoric: AIDS and the Cultural Practices of HIV Testing

by John Blake Scott
     
 

ISBN-10: 0809324946

ISBN-13: 9780809324941

Pub. Date: 02/28/2003

Publisher: Southern Illinois University Press

Risky Rhetoric: AIDS and the Cultural Practices of HIV Testing is the first book-length study of the rhetoric inherent in and surrounding HIV testing. In addition to providing a history of HIV testing in the United States from 1985 to the present, J. Blake Scott explains how faulty arguments about testing’s power and effects have promoted

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Overview

Risky Rhetoric: AIDS and the Cultural Practices of HIV Testing is the first book-length study of the rhetoric inherent in and surrounding HIV testing. In addition to providing a history of HIV testing in the United States from 1985 to the present, J. Blake Scott explains how faulty arguments about testing’s power and effects have promoted unresponsive and even dangerous testing practices for so-called normal subjects as well as those deemed risky.

           

 Drawing on classical rhetoric as well as Michel Foucault’s theorizing of the examination as a form of disciplinary power, this study explores how HIV testing functions as a disciplinary technology that shapes subjects and exerts power over individual bodies and populations. Testing has largely been deployed to protect those defined as normal members of the general population by detecting, managing, and even punishing those diagnosed as risky (e.g., gay and bisexual men, poor women of color). But Scott reveals that testing’s function of protection-through-detection has been fueled in part by faulty arguments that exaggerate testing’s interventive power and benefits. These arguments have also created a perception that testing is a magic bullet. By overestimating the benefits of HIV testing and overlooking its contingencies and harmful effects, dominant arguments about testing have enabled a shortsighted public health response to HIV and unresponsive testing policies.

           

 The ultimate goal of Risky Rhetoric: AIDS and the Cultural Practices of HIV Testing is to offer strategies to policymakers, HIV educators and test counselors, and other rhetors for developing more responsive and egalitarian testing-related rhetorics and practices.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780809324941
Publisher:
Southern Illinois University Press
Publication date:
02/28/2003
Edition description:
1st Edition
Pages:
296
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures
Acknowledgments
1Rhetoric and the Cultural Practices of HIV Testing1
2Refocusing Rhetoric in a Rhetorical-Cultural Approach15
3The HIV Test as a Disciplinary Technology: A Genealogy35
4Mapping the HIV Test in the Discursive-Material Practices of Sex90
5Microtechniques of Testing at the AIDS Project121
6Putting Women and Newborns to the HIV Test160
7Rhetoric and the Cultural Practices of Home Collection Testing196
8Ensuring Ethical HIV Testing Practices229
Notes245
Works Cited255
Index273

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