There is no question that AIDS has been, and continues to be, one of the most destructive diseases of the century, taking thousands of lives, devastating communities, and exposing prejudice and bigotry. But AIDS has also been a disease of transformation—it has fueled the national gay civil rights movement, altered medical research and federal drug testing, shaken up both federal and local politics, and inspired a vast cultural outpouring. Victory Deferred, the most comprehensive account of the epidemic in more than ten years, is the history of both the destruction and transformation wrought by AIDS.
John-Manuel Andriote chronicles the impact of the disease from the coming-out revelry of the 1970s to the post-AIDS gay community of the 1990s, showing how it has changed both individual lives and national organizations. He tells the truly remarkable story of how a health crisis pushed a disjointed jumble of local activists to become a nationally visible and politically powerful civil rights movement, a full-fledged minority group challenging the authority of some of the nation's most powerful institutions. Based on hundreds of interviews with those at the forefront of the medical, political, and cultural
responses to the disease, Victory Deferred artfully blends personal narratives with institutional histories and organizational politics to show how AIDS forced gay men from their closets and ghettos into the hallways of power to lobby and into the streets to protest.
Andriote, who has been at the center of national advocacy and AIDS politics in Washington, is judicious without being uncritical, and his account of the political maturation of the gay community is one of the most stirring civil rights stories of our time.
Victory Deferred draws on hundreds of original interviews, including first-hand accounts from: Virginia Apuzzo, Reverend Carl Bean, Marcus Conant, M.D., John D'Emilio, Anthony Fauci, M.D, Fenton Johnson, Larry Kramer, Lawrence D. Mass, M.D., Armistead Maupin, Walt Odets, Torie Osborn, Eric Rofes, Urvashi Vaid, Timothy Westmoreland, and Reggie Williams.
"[Victory Deferred] is a richly textured account of the rise of the AIDS sector, that though detailed and comprehensive, reads quickly. The thematic organization of the book works especially well. The clear chronology of the events reveals how competing models of service delivery, treatment activism and private-public cooperation were subsumed into a national AIDS movement. The book should prove excellent for teaching or recreational reading."—Jose Gabilondo, Washington Post
"[A] fine history of the epidemic. . . . Andriote shines with chapters on less-covered but no less important subjects, including the multibillion-dollar 'AIDS industry' and private fund-raising groups. He brings together in one place many facts and figures heretofore unsynthesized."—Joe R. Neel, Boston Globe
"While many books have explored aspects of the impact of AIDS, Victory Deferred is among the most comprehensive. Andriote's adroit integration of the personal and the historical results is an illustrative, analytical account of the disease and its impact on the gay civil-rights movement. His depiction of the poignant struggles, heroic responses and resultant social and political gains emanating from AIDS is a perceptive document for our time—relevant to all readers, regardless of their sexual orientation."—John R. Killacky, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"[A] well-researched and nuanced portrait of the many lives on which this grave disease has wrought both destruction and transformation."—Publishers Weekly
"Andriote combines broad strokes and telling details in this engaging history of the complicated war against both disease and bigotry."—Library Journal