A Study of How the Media and Government Affected the HIV/AIDS Epidemic for the Homosexual Population in the United Kingdom During the 1980s

Moore, N.L. (2022) A Study of How the Media and Government Affected the HIV/AIDS Epidemic for the Homosexual Population in the United Kingdom During the 1980s. Undergraduate thesis, University of Chichester.

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Abstract

The decade of the 1980s in England saw the emergence of HIV and AIDS, a new illness
which involved the weakening of the immune system in order to allow life-threatening
infections of the body. The illness was first recorded in continents like Africa and North
America in the 1960s, with the first cases in the United Kingdom being recorded in 1981.
Despite the illness never showing evidence of infecting specific types of people depending on
sexuality, when the illness began to appear in the public eye in the UK, HIV was almost
immediately labelled an illness that only infects homosexual individuals, resulting in a
decade-long struggle between HIV and homosexual people in the country. This struggle is the
focus of this dissertation. This dissertation is going to be talking about this subject and is
going to delve into and analyse how this decade-long problem was created through a
combination of media backlash and panic, and a severely lacking government response. The
media coverage of HIV was created with an intention to shock people and saw to place blame
on the gay population of the country, a group which was already a minority group in the
country. In addition, there was a distinct lack of empathy from the government over the
epidemic, leading to the government’s slow response which lasted years, leaving many lives
hanging in the balance because of a slow output of aid and strategy to stop the epidemic. Had
the media and the government not taken a negative stance on an already minority group of
people, a lot of peoples’ lives could have been spared the life-changing consequences of the
epidemic.

Item Type: Thesis (Undergraduate)
Additional Information: A dissertation submitted in part fulfilment of the BA (Hons) Medieval and Early Modern History
Uncontrolled Keywords: Government, HIV Epidemic
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General)
J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General)
Depositing User: Gail Graffham
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2022 11:41
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2022 11:41
URI: https://eprints.chi.ac.uk/id/eprint/6627

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