|Cím||Sexual Ecology: AIDS and the Destiny of Gay Men|
There was a time, before AIDS, when gay male culture was often synonymous with multiple partners, bathhouses, and an emphasis on youth and physical beauty. Monogamy was identified with "straight" culture and therefore something to be resisted. Even when the AIDS epidemic was at its height, the gay community promoted condom use but did little to discourage risky behavior. In his groundbreaking book Sexual Ecology, author Gabriel Rotello views the epidemic in a new way: as part of an ecological system. Rotello's approach, while unique in the study of AIDS, is one familiar to the environmental movement. He sees the disease not as a discrete element, but as part of a system of "behaviors, thoughts and feelings that made gay culture so susceptible to AIDS." Although Rotello aims his book primarily at a gay audience, Sexual Ecology has a wider appeal. His chronicle follows the growth of promiscuity among homosexual men through its promotion by bathhouse owners and the gay media. Equally fascinating is the current trend toward more mainstream values among many gay men. Finally, his suggestions for making gay culture sustainable (in the words of environmental science) instead of self-destructive provide serious food for thought and for debate. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. If gay men want to end the AIDS epidemic, they must renounce promiscuity. That is the crux of Rotello's careful exposition on why AIDS struck in the '80s, why a second wave of it hit in the '90s, and why, despite condoms, AIDS will regularly recur if promiscuity isn't curbed. The mainspring of the epidemic, Rotello insists, is the high number of other men (more than 1,000 a year) with whom each fast-lane gay man has sex. Rotello demonstrates that by closing the avenue of infection such promiscuity creates, disease prevalence must decline. Culturally, he says, closing those avenues demands reducing the allure of the acts that transmit HIV most readily and promoting sexually faithful monogamy. Rotello's restatement of an argument that is not entirely new is extremely important because of its thoroughness and because he is a gay radical who here parts company with the gay-lib party line that promiscuity is essential to gay male identity. Young gay men especially should heed him. Ray Olson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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