The Construction of Lay Expertise (1995)

1946-1989, 1990-2010, Consciousness Raising, Date, Disruptive Spaces, History, History/Theory, Institutions, Occupation, Tactics of Disruption, The Workplace, Theory, Uncategorized

In the 1980s, the AIDs epidemic began to wreak havoc across the country, specifically amongst gay men. These affected communities felt that the government and other facets of society were not addressing the epidemic properly and so, they were dying in massive proportions. A group of committed activists formed an organization called ACTUP and used disruptive tactics to create more awareness about their issue. One of the most provocative techniques they used was to gather in large amounts and play dead with signs that suggested who was responsible for their death, like the CDC. This paper by Steven Epstein details other such tactics that disrupted people’s every-day movements and oftentimes, forced them to reckon with the AIDs epidemic and its victims.