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“Securing Safety and Reducing Harm: The Politics of Risk, Violence, and Injury in LGBT Political History”
November 30, 2016 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Dr. Christina Hanhardt (University of Maryland, College Park)“Securing Safety and Reducing Harm: The Politics of Risk, Violence, and Injury in LGBT Political History”
Talk Description: In the 1990s, the AIDS activist organization ACT UP created a needle exchange program in New York in the name of what they described as a “throwaway class” of drug users, gay people, people of color, and homeless people. Today needle exchange is considered a signature strategy of harm reduction, a broad approach to public health that seeks to minimize the harm of high-risk practices by rejecting prohibition, shame, and punishment. Hanhardt puts ACT UP’s early needle exchange program in the broader context of LGBT social movement history, to ask how ideas about risk, violence, and injury as well as race, class, and sexual identity have shaped ideas about the subjects and strategies of queer activism.