Alan D Brown Abstract
Risk, Reflexivity and Danger An examination of the data over the course of the HIV/AIDS pandemic had shown early success at reducing incident or new infections. However, in the mid-1990’s, rates of new infections spiked among a segment of the gay community that defied explanation using existing models. The traditional public health risk assessment models of HIV prevention are based on a rational choice and largely economic cost/benefit model. Accordingly, it is not possible to understand “choosing” the risk of becoming HIV positive in favour of remaining uninfected. Since the beginning of the epidemic, discourses of risk and danger were quickly established as lenses to negotiate the realities of a world with AIDS. As treatments improved and began changing how people engaged with the virus, a additional shift has occurred. Danger is no longer unidirectional, but rather reflexively related to identity, body politics, race and risk. This new discourse, of men being both dangerous as well as “in danger” is explored using sexual history interviews conducted with gay men the US and Canada.