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Gay Rights Movement: Series 3: ACT UP: The AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power

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About this Collection

AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT Up)

Introduction : Series Three: ACT UP: The AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power

The AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) united a diverse, non-partisan group of individuals committed to direct action to end the AIDS crisis. The direct action consisted of vocal demonstrations and dramatic acts of civil disobedience. The focus of ACT UP was on speeding governmental approval of new, often experimental, anti-AIDS drugs and on forcing pharmaceutical firms to reduce the price of AIDS-related medications.

This collection was acquired by the New York Public Library and provides unrivalled insight into the transformation of the movement during the AIDS crisis. It consists of memoranda, correspondence, large amounts of ephemera, meeting minutes, clipping files, materials from other ACT UP chapters and an extensive collection of medical and pharmaceutical information.

The collection is also of interest to those in medicine, pharmacology and epidemiology. As the historian John Louchery has written, many ACT UP members "had become as knowledgeable about HIV and drug trials as any scientist in the country."