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'Infectious Blackness' talk Dec. 3 in Chicago
2019-11-07

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Steven W. Thrasher, Ph.D., will speak on "Infectious Blackness: Race, Media, and the Criminalization of HIV/AIDS" Tuesday, Dec. 3, 12-1 p.m., at Stonewall Conference Rooms, 625 N. Michigan Ave., in a Third Coast Center for AIDS Research event.

"Infectious Blackness" draws upon Thrasher's five years of coverage of the Michael Johnson case for BuzzFeed News, pairing it with his firsthand reporting on the killing of Michael Brown in nearby Ferguson for the Guardian. Johnson, a Black college student, was arrested in 2013 in St. Charles, Missouri, on charges he had knowingly infected or exposed multiple men to HIV. Johnson as known as "Tiger Mandingo" in news accounts, a nickname he used as a college wrestler and in online profiles—a nickname which was all the more racially charged given the majority of Johnson's sexual partners pressing charges against him were white.

Utilizing ethnography, media analysis and archival research, "Infectious Blackness" theorizes how Blackness and HIV/AIDS are criminalized and policed in the media.

People can attend in person or via videoconference, using BlueJeans. For more information, visit www.thirdcoastcfar.org/events/steven-thrasher-phd/ .


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