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literature

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AIDS Literature  
 
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Other Works of AIDS Literature: 1984-1993

Other selected works of AIDS literature also deserve mention: Paul Reed's Facing It (1984), the first gay American AIDS novel; Night Sweat (1984) by Robert Chesley (d. 1990), the first American AIDS play (published in his 1990 collection, Hard Plays, Stiff Parts); the last three volumes of Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City series, Babycakes (1984), Significant Others (1987), and Sure of You (1989), where AIDS becomes an ever more prominent subject; the four to six stories about AIDS in each of the Men on Men: Best New Gay Fiction collections (1986, 1988, 1990, 1992).

Also of note are Harvey Fierstein's Safe Sex (1987), three one-acts; the moving AIDS-related poems that dot Mark Doty's books, Turtle, Swan (1987), Bethlehem in Broad Daylight (1991), and the National Book Critics' Circle Award-winning My Alexandria (1993); Christopher Davis's Valley of the Shadow (1988), about a wealthy young New York man and his ex-lover as they die from AIDS; Richard Greenberg's play Eastern Standard (1988), which features a gay man with AIDS among its main characters; Zero Positive (1988) by Harry Kondoleon (d. 1994), which mixes AIDS among homosexual and heterosexual New Yorkers with other subjects (published in M. Elizabeth Osborn's 1990 anthology, The Way We Live Now: American Plays & the AIDS Crisis).

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Notable too are Larry Kramer's play Just Say No (1988), a delirious skewering of the Reagan and Koch administrations in which government inaction on AIDS is one of several targets; Joel Redon's Bloodstream (1988), a brooding autobiographical novel in which a young gay man with AIDS returns to his Oregon family; Christopher Bram's In Memory of Angel Clare (1989), about the surviving lover and friends of a New York filmmaker who died of AIDS; the autobiographical Les nuits fauves ([1989]; trans. Savage Nights, 1993) by Cyril Collard (d. 1993), the basis for the 1992 film about an HIV-positive bisexual French filmmaker.

Also deserving of mention are the black gay author Larry Duplechan's engaging Tangled Up in Blue (1989), in which an HIV-positive gay man, his bisexual ex-lover, and his ex-lover's wife deal with the effects of AIDS on their relationships in 1985 Los Angeles; Gary Indiana's Horse Crazy (1989), where AIDS figures occasionally as a writer obsessively pursues a beautiful, manipulative addict, and his Gone Tomorrow (1993), which in its last third, documents the AIDS deaths and suicides of several members of an international film crew; These Waves of Dying Friends (1989) by Michael Lynch (d. 1991), poems by a Toronto-based American AIDS-activist and academic.

Deserving attention as well are Personal Dispatches: Writers Confront AIDS (1989), edited by John Preston (d. 1994), a diverse collection of stirring essays by gay and lesbian authors; Ron Schreiber's John (1989), poems chronicling the sickness and death from AIDS of the author's lover; Michael Cunningham's much-praised A Home at the End of the World (1990), which incorporates a person with AIDS in its final sections; Paul Monette's more popularly written novels: Afterlife (1990), about three gay male "AIDS widowers" in Los Angeles, and Halfway Home (1991), in which a gay male PWA and his heterosexual brother reconcile.

Also noteworthy are lesbian novelist Sarah Schulman's People in Trouble (1990), where an East Village lesbian and her bisexual lover negotiate their relationship against a background of AIDS activism; Hervé Guibert's Le protocole compassionnel ([1991]; trans. The Compassion Protocol, 1993), L'homme au chapeau rouge ([1992]; trans. The Man in the Red Hat, 1993), Le paradis (1992) and Cytomégalovirus: Journal d'hospitalisation (1992), sequels to his To the Friend Who Did Not Save My Life.

Deserving attention as well are Boys Like Us (1991) and Sweetheart (1992) by Peter McGehee (d. 1991), two semicomic, semisorrowful novels tracing a group of gay male Toronto friends during the epidemic, and Labour of Love (1993), a further sequel by McGehee's lover, Doug Wilson (d. 1992), based on McGehee's notes; Joseph Caldwell's Uncle from Rome (1992), in which a visiting American opera singer becomes entangled with several Italians, including a transvestite prostitute threatened by AIDS, and is finally able to grieve for his American ex-lover who died of the disease.

Other works of note are the collection Fidelities (1992) by Richard Hall (d. 1992), which has four AIDS-related stories ("The Jilting of Tim Weatherall," "The Cannibals," "Manhattan Transfer," and "Being a Baroness"); and One Boy at War (1993) by Paul A. Sergios (d. 1994), which includes the author's experiences as a PWA in what is chiefly a report about AIDS treatments and the alternative AIDS-drug underground.

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