Body Counts

A Memoir of Activism, Sex, and Survival

Body Counts

The founder of POZ magazine shares “a captivating…eyewitness account from inside the AIDS epidemic” (Next) and “a moving, multi-decade memoir of one gay man’s life” (San Francisco Chronicle).

As a politics-obsessed Georgetown freshman, Sean Strub arrived in Washington, DC, from Iowa in 1976, with a plum part-time job running a Senate elevator in the US Capitol. He also harbored a terrifying secret: his attraction to men. As Strub explored the capital’s political and social circles, he discovered a parallel world where powerful men lived double lives shrouded in shame.

When the AIDS epidemic hit in the early 1980s, Strub was living in New York and soon found himself attending “more funerals than birthday parties.” Scared and angry, he turned to radical activism to combat discrimination and demand research. Strub takes you through his own diagnosis and inside ACT UP, the organization that transformed a stigmatized cause into one of the defining political movements of our time.

From the New York of Studio 54 and Andy Warhol’s Factory to the intersection of politics and burgeoning LGBT and AIDS movements, Strub’s story crackles with history. He recounts his role in shocking AIDS demonstrations at St. Patrick’s Cathedral as well as at the home of US Sen­ator Jesse Helms. With an astonishing cast of characters, including Tennessee Williams, Gore Vidal, Keith Haring, Bill Clinton, and Yoko Ono, is a vivid portrait of a tumultuous era: “A page-turner…[with] the suspense and horror of Paul Monette’s memoir Borrowed Time and the drama of Larry Kramer’s play The Normal Heart….What a lot of action—and life—there is in this gripping book” (The Washington Post).
  • Scribner | 
  • 448 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451661965 | 
  • September 2014
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Video

Founder of POZ on AIDS and Politics

Sean Strub, author of Body Counts, founder of the groundbreaking POZ magazine, and the first openly HIV-positive candidate for U.S. Con­gress discusses his remarkable life—a story of politics and AIDS and a powerful testament to survival.

More Books from this Author

Sean Strub, founder of the groundbreaking POZ magazine, producer of the hit play The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me, and the first openly HIV-positive candidate for U.S. Con­gress, charts his remarkable life—a story of politics and AIDS and a powerful testament to loss, hope, and survival. As a politics-obsessed Georgetown freshman, Sean Strub arrived in Washington, D.C., from Iowa in 1976, with a plum part-time job running a Senate elevator in the U.S. Capitol. He also harbored a...

About the Author

Sean Strub

Sean Strub is an activist, writer, and executive director of the Sero Project, which combats the criminalization of people with HIV. He founded POZ magazine, the leading publication providing information about HIV, and is a frequent speaker about HIV/AIDS, self-empowerment, and the intersections of sex, public health, and the law. A native of Iowa City, Strub attended Georgetown and Columbia universities. He and his partner, Xavier Morales, live in New York and Milford, Pennsylvania.

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