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University of Michigan

AIDS: Fear and Hope

University of Michigan via Coursera


The basic biology of the virus, HIV, and the disease it causes, AIDS. The economic, social and political factors that determine who gets sick and who remains healthy, who lives and who dies. The progress of scientific research and medical treatments. The reasons for hope; the reasons for fear. (To get a glimpse of some of the materials that students have been posting on the course forums, go to @AIDSFAH or #AIDSFAH.)


  • Unit 1 - Beginnings: A New Disease Surprises The World
    • HIV Basics, Stigma, Three Books, Chimps to Humans, Some Memories
  • Unit 2 - Transmission, Gender, Politics
    • Transmission, Gender, More Memories
  • Unit 3 - Testing (and Some Politics and Memories)
    • The Critical Issue--Testing
  • Unit 4 - Living With HIV
    • Not a death sentence, but not easy; More Politics, Sexual Orientation
  • Unit 5 - Caring for Patients
    • Doctors, Medication, More Politics, More Memories
  • Unit 6 - Prevention, Art, Poetry
  • Unit 7 - Wrapping Up
    • Cure? Legal Issues, Cost, The Future, Acting Up

Taught by

Richard Meisler


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5.0 rating, based on 2 reviews

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  • This material, while quite dated, provides an excellent introduction to HIV-AIDS pandemic from its recognition in the 1980s up to around 2014. The discussion is succinct, going well and beyond the immediate biomedical, clinical and public health considerations. The whole-rounded approach to the topic firmly establishes the wrath of the pandemic being "modified" or made malleable by the societies it penetrated. The suggested materials for further viewing either adds humanity to the topic or provides an expansive historical view to the failures and successes of our collective response to the ongoing scourge.
  • Ilya Rusin completed this course.

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