A I D S B O O K R E V I E W J O U R N A L

University of Illinois at Chicago

H. Robert Malinowsky

Editor

ISSN 1068-4174

Number 18 - July 1995


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EDITORIAL NOTE: I have been asked to present a short paper this fall at a meeting of the Illinois Association of College and Research Libraries. The paper is to be jointly presented with a colleague and is titled, "Providing Health Information to Consumers Through Information Resources and New Technologies." My part of the paper will cover my experiences in editing the AIDS Book Review Journal. This journal is mailed to over 300 addresses and then re-distributed by some of you to several hundred more. As part of the paper I would like to report on how this journal is used by any of you personally and, if it is forwarded or made available to others, what categories of individuals that might be. You can respond to the listserv at AIDSBKRV@UICVM.UIC.EDU or directly to me at U50095@UICVM.UIC.EDU.

Thanks in advance for your responses. H. Robert Malinowsky, Editor.


Reviewed in this issue:

363. AIDS in Post-Communist Russia and Its Successor States, by Christopher Williams.
364. AIDS and HIV in Perspective: A Guide to Understanding the Virus and Its Consequences, by Barry D. Schoub.
365. Global AIDS Policy, edited by Douglas A. Feldman.
366. Gardening in Clay: Reflections on AIDS, by Ronald O. Valdiserri.
367. Caring, Commitment and Choices: Self-Help Strategies for HIV/AIDS Caregivers, by National Association of People with AIDS.
368. Sex, Death, and the Education of Children: Our Passion for Ignorance in the Age of AIDS, by Jonathan G. Silin.
369. HIV and the Pathogenesis of AIDS, by Jay A. Levy.
370. Out of the Past: Gay and Lesbian History from 1869 to the Present, by Neil Miller.
371. HIV: An Electronic Media Information Review, edited by C. Zimitat, D.D. Maitland.
372. HIV Infection in Women, edited by Howard Minkoff, Jack A. DeHovitz, Ann Duerr.
373. My Brother Has AIDS, by Deborah Davis.
374. AIDS, Ethics and Religion: Embracing a World of Suffering, edited by Kenneth R. Overberg.
375. Nutrition and AIDS, edited by Ronald R. Watson.
376. AIDS, Gays, and the American Catholic Church, by Richard L. Smith.

Pre-1994 books briefly noted or reviewed

377. How to Make Love to a Man (Safely): A New, Intimate Guide to Sexy Sex in the Nineties, by Alexandra Penney, Susan Dooley.
378. Testing Positive: Sexually Transmitted Disease and the Public Health Response, by Patricia Donovan.
379. Longing: Selected Poems, by Jaime Gil de Biedma.
380. 1990, by Michael Klein.
381. My Alexandria: Poems, by Mark Doty.
382. Nutrition and HIV: Your Choices Make a Difference, by Tennessee Department of Health and Environment.
383. El Amor en Los Eiempos del SIDA.
384. The Laughter of Heroes, by Jonathan Neale.
385. Dancing on the Moon: Short Stories About AIDS, by Jameson Currier.

363. AIDS in Post-Communist Russia and Its Successor States, by Christopher Williams. 1995. Ashgate Publishing Co., Old Post Road, Brookfield, VT 05036. 216p., illus., bibliog., index. ISBN 1-85628-570-7. $59.95. (Descriptors: Russia, Soviet Union, Health Care)

This book is the result of several papers delivered at the British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies, Annual Conference, University of Birmingham, March, 1992; Renvall Institute of Historical Research, University of Helsinki, May, 1992; and Union of Journalists in St. Pettersburg, May, 1992. AIDS and HIV infection in Russia and it successor states are very hard to track, resulting in statistics that are rather difficult to believe. "For instance, as of March 1994, Russia had a cumulative total of 740 cases, of which 136 were AIDS and 604 HIV infection." That appears to extremely out of proportion with the rest of the world. Much of this is probably because of the very negative tone that AIDS has had on the countries is this part of the world. The governments are negative and the populations have driven the so called high risk groups underground, making it difficult to give treatment or to even test for the virus. "The aim of this study is to write a history of the evolution and development of Russian and other successor state policies on HIV and AIDS against the backdrop of the collapse of Communism." It is intended to raise an awareness about the extent of AIDS and HIV infection, examine range of prevention measures, ascertain what types of prevention and control strategies are in place, study behavior, determine what resources and expertise are available, determine what funding is available, assess the degree of effectiveness of strategies, and evaluate any measures designed to combat discrimination.

The book does all of this very well with the limited data that is available. Time will only tell whether or not there was enough data based on the rest of the world. The six chapters cover: "Methodology and theory," "AIDS in Russia and the successor states," "AIDS and the health care system," "Health promotion and AIDS awareness," "Perceptions of risk: media treatment of AIDS in the former Soviet Union," and "The role of non-governmental organisations and the gay movement." The unfortunate facts are that knowledge about AIDS is only what the media and government wanted the public to know. They were sympathetic to those who were unfortunate, basically children but place the guilt of the disease on four groups--foreigners, gay men, prostitutes and drug users. One quote from the Russian Young Communist group stated "All gays, prostitutes and drug addicts should be rounded up and shot so as to save the state money on their treatment and to halt the AIDS plague."

There is some progress forward in developing policies but there are also steps backward in just how to carry out these policies, resulting in Iron Curtain constraints. These countries according to this book still do not fully realize how serious this epidemic can become if the right policies are not put into place. For historians, this book is an excellent first step in developing methods of tracking a disease in countries that were ruled for so long by an iron fist. One can only hope that these countries realize what can happen before it is too late. A recommended book for all academic libraries.

364. AIDS and HIV in Perspective: A Guide to Understanding the Virus and Its Consequences, by Barry D. Schoub. 1994. Cambridge University Press, 40 West 10th St., New York, NY 10011-4211. 268p., illus., bibliog., index. ISBN 0-521-45231-7, 0-521-45874-9pbk. $65.00, $19.95pbk. (Descriptors: HIV Infections, History, Descriptions, Transmission, Testing, HIV Testing, Ethics, Epidemiology)

There has been no other disease since the dawn of mankind that has plagued the world as AIDS is at the present time. "In the major cities of the African continent up to one third of the adult population is presently infected with HIV." That is frightening and, in itself, should cause concern for everyone. Yet, in spite of all of the educational efforts that are carried out, individuals still have misconceptions about AIDS to the point that they appear to have heard nothing. Barry Schoub has observed what has been published and decided that what was needed was a book that "bridges the gap between scientific literature and educational pamphlets." He proceeded to try and distil down the mass of scientific literature that is being written about AIDS and related subjects so that a book would be produced for the layperson. He writes, "I have studiously avoided being prescriptive as the aim of this book has been purely to provide an understanding of this extraordinary virus, how it produces disease, how the extent of disease is tracked and what steps are being made to control it and why progress in this regard has been so disappointingly slow." The result is a highly readable book, full of facts, and backed by an extensive bibliography. The first chapter is a history of AIDS followed by "What is AIDS and how does it manifest itself?," "The AIDS virus," "The disease mechanisms of HIV," "The transmission of HIV infection," "The AIDS test," "The Anti-AIDS drugs," "The quest for the AIDS vaccine," "The ethics of AIDS," "Measuring the dimensions of the AIDS epidemic--AIDS epidemiology," and "Conclusion--Outlook for the future." The chapter on the AIDS virus is excellent, discussing the definition, genetics of the virus, HIV, genome of HIV, etc. He ends this chapter with the statement about the virus: "It is, in fact, very poorly transmissible, by viral standards, and relatively labile, in keeping with it being an enveloped virus." He stresses education and in the final part of the chapter on transmission he says, "ignorance breeds fear, fear breeds prejudice and prejudice breeds discrimination, ostracism and eventually hatred." How true!!

This is an exceptional book. It is extremely well written and should be in all libraries from school to medical to public to academic. This is one of the best outlines of AIDS and HIV from its history to the current research of possible vaccines. If only the right people would read and reread and reread so as to understand.

365. Global AIDS Policy, edited by Douglas A. Feldman. 1994. Bergin & Garvey, 88 Post Road West, Westport, CT 06881. 250p., bibliog., index. ISBN 0-89789-282-8, 0-89789-412-Xpbk. $59.95, $18.95pbk. (Descriptors: Government Policy) (26 contributors to this volume)

Part of the chapters for this volume were from a 1991 meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology and a 1990 meeting of the American Anthropological Association. AIDS and public policy are high on the list of topics being discussed today, especially in North America and Europe. In editing the papers for this book, Douglas A. Feldman observes that "to effectively accomplish the control of HIV on a global scale, it will be necessary to replace political considerations and a biomedical approach with a public health and social science approach." The authors cover polices all over the world, including, China, Brazil, Latin America, US, Baganda, and Ghana. Topics include immigration policy, sexual behavior, attitudes towards condom use, apartheid, ethnography, and drug use. This is a well researched book full of facts that form the basis for further research. One thing to keep in mind is that policies change and what may be discussed in this book for 1990 and 1991 could very well be different in 1995. The need for more global policies is critical with there being an estimated 70 million people to be infected in Africa alone in the next 25 years unless something is found to halt the spread. This book comes straight to the point in showing how expensive the research has become, how more care centers are needed, and how great a loss we have had of the world's most talented people.

This is a highly recommended book for all libraries, especially academic research libraries where further research is needed now in all aspects of AIDS and HIV infection. The world's leaders need to recognize that only through research and education can we conquer this disease.

366. Gardening in Clay: Reflections on AIDS, by Ronald O. Valdiserri. 1994. Cornell University Press, Sage House, 512 E. State St., Ithaca, NY 14850. 107p. ISBN 0-8014-2981-1. $16.95. (Descriptors: Social Aspects, Psychological Aspects)

Ronald Valdiserri has written 26 essays that express his "strong belief that AIDS is much more than just a medical or public health problem." His twin brother died of HIV-related disease creating a void in his personal life that can never be filled except through writings such as in this book. These essays present the thoughts and feelings that he has about AIDS ranging "from teenage sexuality to life after death to Edwin and his illness." The one thing that Valdiserri wants these essays to portray is that "What we learn from it has the potential to make us better people and enrich our society." These are heart warming essays that one can read again and again; essays that anyone who has been touched by AIDS can relate to. There is sadness in some and humor in others. All in all they are highly recommended for anyone who is faced with coping with this disease or who is associated with someone who has the disease. It is recommended for all libraries.

367. Caring, Commitment and Choices: Self-Help Strategies for HIV/AIDS Caregivers, by The National Association of People with AIDS, Yas Branden, Jeff Crowley, Raymond Lin, Lisa Ragain, Howard Whitfield, with Mary Ann Salerno, Lillie R. Brock, Jim Wrightsman. 1994. Bridge Builder Media, 150 S. Washington St, Ste. 204, Falls Church, VA 22046-2921. 157p., illus. The Change Cycle. ISBN 0-9638959-4-X. $16.00. (Descriptors: Caregivers, Self-Help)

Caregivers are the real heroes in this second decade of AIDS. Without them, the suffering would be unbelievable. They constantly face burnout, yet they give of themselves like no other persons can give. Their caseloads continue to increase even with all the education and medical help that is now available. "On a daily basis, HIV/AIDS service providers face uncertainty. And the changes are painful. They are a source of fear when a struggling organization faces the bills that mean budget cuts. They are a source of conflict when the needs of people with HIV and AIDS are lost in apathy and politics. They are the source of sorrow when a client first becomes a friend, then a confidant, and finally a memory that tests our resolve. Yet change is inevitably the source of our strength and wisdom." This book is intended to help these strong willed people and try to look at both the successes and the disappointments. It is a handbook that stresses that caregiving and change are partners and this change can be both good and bad but it is natural and neutral.

There are six stages in change and each of these stages is outlined in a chapter: Stage 1--"Challenging Fear, Creating Safety," Stage 2--"Confronting Doubt, Gathering Information," Stage 3--"Moving Through Discomfort, Motivating Yourself," "The Danger Zone," Stage 4--"Experiencing Discovery, Making Choices," Stage 5--"Arriving at Understanding, Embracing the Benefits," and Stage 6--"Allowing Integration, Being Flexible." Reading and understanding these stages will result in change being "the catalyst that created every ounce of caring that you've shared, every commitment that you've made and been a factor in each of your choices." This is a highly recommended book for all caregivers, both experienced and inexperienced. All libraries should have copies.

368. Sex, Death, and the Education of Children: Our Passion for Ignorance in the Age of AIDS, by Jonathan G. Silin. 1955. Teachers College Press, 1234 Amsterdam Ave., New York, NY 10027. 249p., bibliog., index. (The Politics of Identity and Education Series). ISBN 0-8077-3406-3, 0-8077-3405-5pbk. $39.00, $18.95pbk. (Descriptors: Study and Teaching, Early Childhood, Social Aspects, Children and Adults, Gender Identity, Feminist Theory, Educational Sociology)

It is obvious that education at the adult level is not reaching everyone when senators such as Jesse Helms speak out against AIDS funding as he recently has. We have to do better. We have to begin with the children even though it angers some parents when they here the facts and yet fail to understand what is being said. Jonathan Silin has written a book about language that is used to teach the children in schools. "He shows us how the early childhood curriculum deploys a false altruism, pretending to protect children from what adults are afraid to think about. He shows us how we culture ignorance in children and in each other by refusing to hear and respond to what they and we already know." He stresses again and again that we have to know everything about our own lives before our children can understand. This is a book about sex, death, love and life and all of the fears that go along with them. The 8 chapters cover: "HIV/AIDS: The Politics of an Epidemic," "Responding to Children in Time," "HIV/AIDS Education: Toward a Collaborative Curriculum," "Developmentalism and the Aims of Education," "Contours of Ignorance," "Curricular Languages: Queerying Feminist Perspectives," "How Do We Know? And Other Questions of the Closet," and "The Politics of Identity and the Differences Inside Me."

This is not a book to pick up and read like a novel. One has to read and re-read to understand where Silin is coming from. Nonetheless, it is an excellent book that has been thoroughly researched, presenting ideas that many do not consider valid. This is an excellent summary of what has been written up to this time about the topics of sex, death, love, and life as they relate to AIDS. An educator would find this a useful resource and a place to begin in teaching young children. Many, however, will be opposed to anything that is presented in the book because the author is gay. This book is recommended for all libraries.

369. HIV and the Pathogenesis of AIDS, by Jay A. Levy. 1994. American Society for Microbiology/ASM Press, 1325 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20005. 359p., illus., bibliog., index. 1-55581-076-4. $72.00. (Descriptors: HIV Viruses, HIV Infections, Pathogenesis, Etiology, Pathology, Pathogenicity)

"This book reviews the history, background, and current studies of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and the pathogenic pathways leading to the development of the variety of diseases now known as AIDS." It was originally written as a review for Microbiological Reviews with additions. It is an excellent review for the professional, but also for the educated layperson. The 12 chapters cover "Discovery and Nature of the HIV Viron," "Features of HIV Transmission and Acute Infection," "Early Steps Involved in HIV Infection of Cells," "Intracellular Control of HIV Replication," "Cytopathic Properties of HIV," "Heterogeneity of HIV and Its Relation to Pathogenesis," "Viral Regions Determining Biologic Features of HIV," "Effect of HIV on Different Tissues and Organ Systems in the Host," "Humoral and Cell-Mediated Immune Responses to HIV Infection," "HIV Infection and Development of Cancer," "Overall Features of HIV Pathogenesis," and "Antiviral Approaches." For any researcher who is working on HIV research, this book should be read first. Of particular note is a bibliography of 1,996 references. A highly recommended book for all medical and academic libraries. Although highly technical, it would be appropriate for any large public library.

370. Out of the Past: Gay and Lesbian History from 1869 to the Present, by Neil Miller. 1995. Vintage Books/Random House. 657p., bibliog., index. ISBN 0-679-74988-8. $16.00. (Descriptors: Gays, Lesbians, History)

Since AIDS has affected so many gay men, it is critical that one understands gay and lesbian history. Gays have suffered much with this disease and many negative comments have been written and said, including those of Senator Helms. This book is an excellent history that is a delight to read. It is well-documented and full of facts. The seven sections cover: "The Invention of Homosexuality," "Four Bohemias," "Triumph of Ideology," "Before Stonewall," "The Gay Liberation Decades," "The International Scene," and "The Gay Moment." Chapter 27 covers the 1980s including AIDS, the Vatican, lesbian sex debates, Michel Foucault, Terry Dolan, and the gay fiction boom. This is a must-read book and should be in all libraries and made available to all those who feel that AIDS and gays go together and should, therefore, not be given much attention.

371. HIV: An Electronic Media Information Review: HIV-EMIR, edited by C. Zimitat, D.D. Maitland from various Internet sources with the purpose of expediting the dissemination of information about HIV and AIDS. v.1, no.1- , November 14, 1994- . HIV-EMIR, PO Box 999, Toowong, Queensland 4066. Email: hiv@biosci.uq.oz.au. ISSN: 1323-5613. Free. (Descriptors: Reviews)

This is an electronic newsletter that reports information from conference proceedings, international press releases and scientific research from around the world. It is intended for Australian researchers, but available to anyone who cares to subscribe over the internet. The intended audience includes HIV practitioners, primary care providers, HIV research workers, and People Living with HIV/AIDS. Recommended for all HIV/AIDS researchers who have access to the internet and to libraries that can point to this electronic resource on their menus.

372. HIV Infection in Women, edited by Howard Minkoff, Jack A. DeHovitz, Ann Duerr. 1995. Raven Press, 1185 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10036. 328p., bibliog., index. ISBN 0-7817-0236-4. $98.00. (Descriptors: Women, HIV Infections, Women's Health) (27 contributors to this volume)

HIV infection of women is increasing at an alarming rate. In the United States it is the fourth leading cause of death of reproductive age women. Internationally, 3,000 women a day are infected with the virus. "This book serves as a user's manual for clinicians who will provide care to HIV-infected women." It is also hoped that "this text will be found dog-eared in clinics, turned to by providers as they establish sites to treat women and as they face the unique clinical and interpersonal problems that confront HIV-infected women." The book is divided into two parts. The first part--"Basic Considerations"-- describes what the reader or clinician must know in order to treat HIV infection. The second part--"Clinical Considerations"--presents what must be done.

The 27 contributors all have expertise in a particular area and present their views clearly and precisely for the reader. They provide information on epidemiology, virology, sociology, and pathophysiology as well as how to establish and run a clinic. As to the establishing and running a clinic, the contributors provide information on services ranging from counseling and testing through obstetric, gynecologic, and medical care. The first part has 7 chapters covering "Epidemiology of HIV/AIDS in Women," "HIV: Basic Virology and Pathophysiology," "HIV Vaccines," "Natural History of HIV Infection in Women," "Heterosexual Transmission of HIV," "Psychological Issues in the Treatment of HIV-Infected Women," and "Psychosocial Aspects of Providing Care for Women with HIV Infection." The second part has 9 chapters covering "Medical Management of HIV Disease in Women," "Contraception," "Pregnancy and HIV Infection," "Human Papillomavirus Infection," "HIV/Sexually Transmitted Disease Interactions in Women," "Female Drug Users with HIV Infection," "Providing HIV Counseling and Testing Services to Women," "Starting a Clinic for Women with HIV Disease," and "Women's Rights, Babies' Interests." Although highly technical, this is an excellent book for any clinic and especially for individuals who are starting new HIV clinics for women. The chapters are well documented with extensive bibliographies and each chapter has a summary or conclusion. Even the most recent discussions concerning testing all pregnant women and their newborn is covered in the last chapter.

This is a must book for all medical and large academic libraries as well as large public libraries. It should be a book found on all clinicians shelves who treat women for HIV infection. The more information that can be placed in the hands of these people the quicker we can slow the infection of this disease.

373. My Brother Has AIDS, by Deborah Davis. 1994. Macmillan Publishing Co., 866 Third Ave., New York, NY 10022. 186p. ISBN 0-689-31922-3. $14.95. (Descriptors: Fiction, Brothers and Sisters, Family Life, Swimming)

Deborah Davis has written a story that can be related to by many individuals who have become infected with HIV. Families are torn apart by this disease and families are brought closer together. In this case, Lacy is a swimmer who wants to excel. Swimming is her life until her brother comes home diagnosed with AIDS. He is very sick, yet the family does not want anyone to know that he has AIDS. Lacy has to make many choices but her love for her brother out weighs all of them. "How Lacy finds the courage to face tragedy with honesty, humor, and compassion, and how she begins to reconstruct her own shattered life, makes her story an absorbing one, a story that is both timely and universal." This is an excellent book that will make you laugh, smile, and cry. It is one that should be required reading for all teenagers who say "this will never happen to me." Every library should have copies. Highly recommended.

374. AIDS, Ethics and Religion: Embracing a World of Suffering, edited by Kenneth R. Overberg. 1994. Orbis Books, Maryknoll, NY 10545-0308. 284p., bibliog., index. ISBN 0-88344-949-8. $18.95. (Descriptors: Moral and Ethical Aspects, Religious Aspects, Christianity, Social Aspects) (28 contributors to this volume)

"By presenting the facts about AIDS, this anthology challenges the misconceptions and focuses on the profound dilemmas confronting society and religion." AIDS, ethics, and religion are being discussed more and more as this disease takes its toll on humanity. There is no one answer except compassion. But even here compassion is not always present because of the deep rooted intolerances that some individuals have toward those who have HIV infection. AIDS challenges every aspect of life from moral dilemmas to religion. The first part of the book--"Geography and AIDS: Suffering's Spread"--contains essays cover the sobering facts of AIDS, the spread of AIDS in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, and the views of a Catholic Doctor in the U.S. The second part--"Ethics and AIDS: Moral Issues"--covers such topics as the ethics of caring for patients with HIV or AIDS, the ethics and treatment of HIV infection, women and AIDS, intravenous drug users, HIV-infected professionals and patient's rights, costs, risks, and vaccines. There is much to be learned from this section since moral issues are in the news more and more.

The third part--"Society and AIDS: Responses and Strategies"--has a lot to present, including public opinion, AIDS backlash, public health policies, new approaches to the epidemic, prevention for women, living positively, and hope. Timothy Murphy, a well-known author on the ethics of AIDS and ethics in medicine writes an excellent chapter, "No Time for an AIDS Backlash." He sums it up very clearly by saying "If HIV research and therapy are relegated to a lesser rank in the nation's priorities, it will be gay men, needle users, their sexual partners and their children who will continue to pay the price of neglect, and the epidemic will become again the shadow killer that it was in the beginning." The fourth part--"Religion and AIDS: Compassion and Care"--covers the ways the churches are dealing with the epidemic, stressing that this is a time for special opportunities. This is a book for a wide audience from the layperson to the Catholic Bishop to the caregiver to the politician. It is a book that should be available in every library. Ethics and religion are the two things that people hide behind when it comes to talking about the victims of this disease. We have to educate, educate, educate, if we are to conquer the prejudices and mis-information.

375. Nutrition and AIDS, edited by Ronald R. Watson. 1994. CRC Press, Inc., 2000 Corporate Blvd, NW, Boca Raton, FL 33431. 257p., bibliog., index. ISBN 0-8493-7842-7. $99.95. (Descriptors: Nutritional Aspects) (25 contributors to this volume)

More and more researchers are discovering that proper nutrition is essential to maintaining proper health in HIV-infected individuals. It is important in how medications are administered. AZT, for example, works more effectively when taken with a high fat diet. Vitamins have been found to help many AIDS patients. This book goes into more detail on the value of nutrition in treating AIDS patients. The 15 chapters cover "Nutrition and AIDS," "Nutrition and AIDS in Africa," "AIDS in Europe," "Nutrition in HIV-Positive Drug Addicts," "Energy Metabolism in HIV-Infected Patients," "Pathogenesis and Clinical Aspects of Diarrhea and Its Effect on Nutrition in Patients Infected with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus," "Vitamins in HIV Infection," "The B-Complex Vitamins," "Ascorbic Acid and AIDS," "Vitamin A and HIV Infection," "Effect of HIV on Metabolism and the Relationship to Muscle and Body Protein Content," "AIDS and Food Safety," "Specialized Nutrition Support," "Optimization of Nutritional Support in HIV Disease," and "AIDS and Traditional Food Therapies." This is a thorough, well-documented book that should be on the desks of every physician that treats HIV-infected individuals. Keeping out body in good shape should be of primary concern for everyone one but especially for those whose are HIV-positive. Nutrition could just be the key to living longer with the virus and may delay an opportunistic disease until a vaccine can be developed.

These are well-written chapters that the layperson can understand. For example, the chapter that discusses vitamins in general, each vitamin is described with references to studies that support the use of that vitamin as a supplement. There are more and more studies being conducted on the use of vitamins as supplements. They look promising, especially the use of Vitamin A. This is an excellent book, appropriate for any library. It is easy to read and has a multitude of references for those who want to delve deeper into the topics that are presented. Highly recommended.

376. AIDS, Gays, and the American Catholic Church, by Richard L. Smith. 1994. Pilgrim Press, 700 Prospect Ave. East, Cleveland, OH 44115-1100. 168p., bibliog., index. ISBN 0-8298-1011-0. $14.95. (Descriptors: Religious Aspects, Catholic Church)

This is a deeply challenging book for anyone to read. Compassion has always been uppermost in the teachings of the Catholic Church. However, with AIDS, there is a conflict with that compassion, namely being gay. The Catholic Church cannot accept the idea of someone being gay and as a result has difficulty in having meaningful compassion for those gays who die of AIDS. Fortunately the church doctrines are not followed by some of the priests and their work in the gay communities is very noteworthy. This book tries to explain some of the reasons for what is presented from the Catholic Church. The 5 chapters cover "AIDS and the Religious Metaphor," "The Catholic Church and the Emergence of Gay Culture," "The American Catholic Bishops and the Social Construction of AIDS," "The Challenge of Catholic AIDS Ministry: Conversations with Pastoral Caregivers," and "The Gay Community and the Catholic Church: Battleground or Common Ground." The sense of this entire book can be summed up in the first paragraph of the final chapter "AIDS is a moment when the Catholic church and the gay community share a common desire to alleviate human suffering. This convergence of two conflicting cultures can be either mutually enriching or mutually destructive. It can either hasten the end of the epidemic, or prolong it unnecessarily." How true that last sentence is! The Catholic Church is the main objector to much of the AIDS education that is being presented today. It is especially detrimental to the Hispanic communities who depend on the church for guidance.

This is an excellent book for all Catholics to read and for everyone else to be aware of. It presents the facts with an analysis that is easy to follow and understand. It should give food for thought to any religious leader. All libraries should have the book.

377. How to Make Love to a Man (Safely): A New, Intimate Guide to Sexy Sex in the Nineties, by Alexandra Penney, Susan Dooley. 1993. Carol Southern Books, 201 E 50th St., New York, NY 10022. 147p. ISBN 0-517-59423-4. $18.00. (Descriptors: Sex Instruction for Women, Safe Sex in AIDS Prevention, Sex Psychology, Sexual Hygiene)

The authors are quick to state that the only totally safe way to avoid the risk of AIDS is abstinence. However, "Few of us will elect this option, and so the aim of this book is to provide the latest information about the best ways to protect ourselves and stay healthy." They do this extremely well in a straight forward and sometimes humorous way. They talk about safe sex, condom use, past partners, provocative scenarios, and dialogues that can be engaged.

Although some schools may find this a provocative book to have for their students, it is one that should be considered. Public libraries need several copies and, of course, it is a book for individuals to own and consult.

378. Testing Positive: Sexually Transmitted Disease and the Public Health Response, by Patricia Donovan and The Alan Guttmacher Institute. 1993. Alan Guttmacher Institute, 120 Wall St., New York, NY 10005. 47p., bibliog. ISBN 0-939253-28-3. $16.50.

The Alan Guttmacher Institute is a not-for-profit corporation for reproductive health research, policy analysis and public education. This report presents the public's response to testing positive for sexually transmitted diseases. The STD rates in the United States "are among the highest in the industrialized world, and in some areas, rates approach those found in developing countries." It is believed that 56 million Americans, more than one in five, are infected with a viral STD other than AIDS. AIDS makes this figure go even higher. These are astounding figures when we think of all the effort that is being taken to educate people about safer sex. "People of all backgrounds, economic levels and ages acquire STDs." The report is presented in 7 chapters--"Sexually Transmitted Diseases: A Major Public Health Problem," "What Are the Risk Factors for Acquiring an STD?," "Who is Most Affected by STDs?," "What Are the Financial Costs of STDs?," "The Federal Public Health Response," "Is It Time for Redirection and Expansion?," and "Responding Positively." It is clear in this report that our federal government needs to reexamine its priorities for STD funding and make sure that this area is properly funded, especially emphasizing women and children. An excellent report that should be read by all political leaders and made available in every library.

379. Longing: Selected Poems, by Jaime Gil de Biedma, translated from the Spanish by James Nolan. 1993. City Lights Books, 261 Columbus Ave., San Francisco, CA 94133. 116p. ISBN 0-87286-277-1. $9.95. (Descriptors: Poems)

Jaime Gil de Biedma was born in Barcelona in 1929 and died of AIDS in 1990. He was "a leftist, homosexual poet from the Catalan Capitol, Barcelona--all of Franco's favorite things--who not only published books of autobiographical poetry in Spain but was known as a poet of social conscience as well as erotic lyricism." This collection contains 37 of his poems presented in both their original Spanish and English translation. His poems spoke out against the government, for individual freedom, and the love of life. "His passionate call to the future helped to safeguard individual freedom and the personal imagination during an era of censorship, puritanical intolerance, public poverty and police-state control." His cult status in Spain is the result, partly, of the media accounts of his dying of AIDS. This is a very enjoyable book to read. The poems give one a lot to think about. Any library would do well to have this book on its shelves for lovers of poetry. From his poem "Arts of Growing Old" the following excerpt shows the feelings that go into his poems--"Growing Old can be graceful. It's like learning to dance when young, giving in to a rhythm more insistent than steps you don't know. And it also breeds a certain strange and spontaneous pleasure. A second nature." Highly recommended.

380. 1990, by Michael Klein. 1993. Provincetown Arts Press, 650 Commercial St., Provincetown, MA 02657. 61p. (Provincetown Poets Series, v.2) ISBN 0-944854-06-0, 0-944854-07-9pbk. $35.00, $10.00pbk. (Descriptors: Poems)

Michael Klein was born in 1954 and has had his poetry appear in many journals including Crazyhorse, Ploughshares, and the James White Review. This collection of poems is a delight to read. They are light and full of Michael Klein. You read one and want to read another and another and another. There are 37 poems including "After the Disease Concept" and "AIDS, AIDS, AIDS, AIDS, AIDS," as well as "Places We Fly From" and "This is a Love Poem." A book for all libraries and for all lovers of poetry.

381. My Alexandria: Poems, by Mark Doty. 1993. University of Illinois Press, 1325 S Oak St., Champaign, IL 61820. 89p. ISBN 0-252-06317-1. $10.95. (Descriptors: Poems)

This beautiful collection of poems was selected for the 1993 National Petry Series by Philip Levine. It is a book "about mortality, about the mortal weight of AIDS in particular." Philp Levine says he is "a maker of big, risky, fearless poems in which ordinary human experience becomes music." There are 21 poems included in this collection. Although many of the poems will tug at your heart strings, they are full of truth and reality, reflecting on what is happening in the age of AIDS. Recommended for all libraries.

382. Nutrition and HIV: Your Choices Make a Difference, sponsored by the Tennessee Department of Health and Environment, Tennessee Office of the East Central AIDS Education and Training Center, and Tennessee Hospital Association, edited by Peggy A. Wickwire. no date. Division of Nutrition and Supplemental Food Programs, Tennessee Department of Health and Environment, C2-233 Cordell Hull Bldg., Nashville, TN 37219. 52p. Write for copy. (Descriptors: Nutrition)

This is a very useful little booklet containing a wealth of useful information on basic nutrition, eating problems, healthy foods, food safety, and other related information. Some recipes are also included. This book will help you make healthy choices leaving it up to you to make the food choices you want to eat, how to prepare them, and when to eat them. Recommended for all libraries and for personal use.

383. El Amor en los Tiempos del SIDA. 1988. Editorial Grijalbo, S.A., Calz. San Bartolo Naucalpan No. 282, Argentina Poniente 11230, Miguel Hidalgo, Mexico, D.F. 95p., illus. ISBN 968-419-012-3. $4.50. (Descriptors: Safer Sex)

This is a comic book type presentation of safer sex written in Spanish. It is somewhat humorous, yet the point it put across very well for the public that it is intended for. Recommended for teenagers and adults.

384. Laughter of Heroes, by Jonathan Neale. 1993. Serpent's Tail, 401 W. Broadway, no. 1, New York, NY 10012. 123p. ISBN 1-85242-279-3. $11.99. (Descriptors: Fiction)

A wonderfully-written little book about a puppeteer who has AIDS, was deported from China back to London where his family help him get through his life with as little suffering as possible. It is a moving book that makes you laugh at times and sad at other times. It can be quickly read and re-read. The story is one that happens in real life so many times in this day of AIDS. Highly recommended for all libraries.

385. Dancing on the Moon: Short Stories About AIDS, by Jameson Currier. 1994. Penguin Books, 375 Hudson St., New York, NY 10014. 188p. ISBN 0-14-017272-6. $9.95. (Descriptors: Fiction, Patients, Gay Men)

There are 12 stories in this collection that deal with the impact of AIDS. Some of the stories have been previously published. "As a man who has been a member of the gay community for over twenty years, a man who knew gay life before the plague of AIDS, a man who witnessed the first horrors of the epidemic, a man who has, for the last twelve years, volunteered and helped and cared for and buried more friends than he wishes to list, this evaluation of change led me to write many of the stories in Dancing on the Moon." Each story is complete in itself and gives the reader much to think about. Currier is a good writer who can hold your attention. The short stories that are included are: "What They Carried," "Civil Disobedience," "Winter Coats," "Reunions," "Dancing on the Moon," "Montebello View," "Weekends," "What You Talk About," "The Absolute Worst," "Who the Boys Are," "Jade," and "Ghosts." This is highly recommended for all libraries and everybody who has had AIDS touch them.


[ AIDS BOOK REVIEW JOURNAL | UIC University Library ]

Last updated:09/26/95
URL: http://www.uic.edu/depts/lib/aidsbkrv/