UCL Institute of the Americas


World AIDS Day 2021

1 December 2021

December 1 2021: World AIDS Day

UNAIDS postcard to commemorate World AIDS Day 2021, showing two persons hugging, one person smiling with hope and a person wearing PPE and holding what appears to be a clinical sample. The image carries the text: 'Unequal, unprepared, under threat.'

Today we join the United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS) in marking World AIDS Day 2021, and fully endorse this year's theme End Inequalities. End AIDS. End Pandemics. by echoing their message to: 'highlight  the urgent need to end the inequalities that drive AIDS and other pandemics around the world. Without bold action against inequalities, the world risks missing the targets to end AIDS by 2030, as well as a prolonged COVID-19 pandemic and a spiralling social and economic crisis.' Read the full UNAIDS statement on World AIDS Day 2021 here.

We at UCL Institute of the Americas understand education to be key to ending inequality, and have made the study and research of development, inequality, public health, gender and sexuality studies a core component of our mission and vision, with a specific regional focus on the Americas. We offer a comprehensive portfolio of academic modules as part of our undergraduate programmes, such as: 

and for our master's degrees:

As for graduate research, our PhD candidate Stephen Colbrook is pursuing his project 'States of Infection: Public Health Federalism and the U.S. AIDS Epidemic' under the supervision of Professor Jonathan Bell and Dr Nick Witham. On a related topic, an alumnus of the Institute, now a permanent member of academic and teaching staff, Dr Joshua Hollands, wrote his doctoral dissertation on the topic of homophobic workplace discrimination in the US South and Southwest since the 1970s.

Worth mentioning is the research some of our academic staff have undertaken on AIDS, notably the Institute Director, Professor Jonathan Bell:

Beyond the Politics of the Closet: Gay Rights and the American State since the 1970s (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2020), as editor, and a long list of papers, articles and chapters published in prestigious journals and books, amongst which:

'"To strive for economic and social justice": Welfare, sexuality, and liberal politics in San Francisco in the 1960s,' Journal of Policy History, 22:2 (2010), 193-225

'Interchange: HIV/AIDS and US History,' with Darius Bost, Jennifer Brier, Julio Capo Jr., Jih-Fei Cheng, Daniel Fox, Christina Hanhardt, Emily K. Hobson, Daniel Royles, in Journal of American History, 104:2 (September 2017), 431-460.

'Between Private and Public: AIDS, Health Care Capitalism, and the Politics of Respectability in 80s America,' in Journal of American Studies, 54:1 (February 2020), 159-183

'Queering the 'Welfare Queen': Poverty Politics and the shaping of sexual citizenship in the twentieth-century United States', Proceedings of the British Association of American Studies Annual Conference 2019 (2020)

‘A System in Crisis: US Health Care Politics and the AIDS Epidemic,’ in Martin Halliwell, Sophie Jones, ed., in The Edinburgh Companion to the Politics of American Health (Edinburgh University Press, forthcoming).

On May 28, 2020, Professor Bell was interviewed by ABC TV after the death of American playwright, author, film producer, public health advocate, and LGBT rights activist Larry Kramer. Watch the interview here.

UCL Americas academics engaged in the study and research of gender, sexuality, inequality and public health are, amongst others, Professor Paulo Drinot, Dr Malu GattoDr Joshua Hollands, Professor Maxine Molyneux and Dr Patricio Simonetto.

Key sources of information and support: