"Not only do journalism’s (and art’s) images create false stereotypes of people with AIDS, they depend upon already existing false stereotypes about the groups most significantly affected by AIDS. […] The reaction of many of us when we see homosexuality portrayed in the media is to respond by saying, ‘That’s not true. We’re not like that’ or ‘I’m not like that’ or ‘we’re not all like that.’ But what are we like? What portrait of a gay person or of a PWA, would we feel comfortable with? Which one would be representative? How could it be? and why should it be? One problem with opposing a stereotype, […] is that we tacitly side with those who would distance themselves from the image portrayed, is that we tacitly agree that it is other. […] we must […] recognize that every image of a PWA is a representation, and formulate our activist demands not in relation to the ‘truth’ of the image, but in relation to the conditions of its constructions and to its social effects."
Crimp, Douglas. “Portraits of People With AIDS.” in Cultural Studies. Eds. Grossberg, Nelson, Treichler. New York: Routledge, 126-127. (via fuckyeahdouglascrimp)
Reblogging for a second time…
I’d like to challenge people dealing with visual representations of the body (their bodies just as much as the bodies of others) to think of ways to not only shift the terms of their representation (bad vs. good; pretty vs. ugly; shaming vs. proud; etc.), but also the modes of representation being employed to do so.