A history of virulence. The body and computer culture in the 1980s

Abstract : Analysing both mainstream and underground computer-related press sources from 1982 to 1991, a discursive core is displayed revolving around contamination and sexually transmissible diseases. The "computer virus" metaphor, popularized in that period, came to resonate with mounting moral panic over the HIV/AIDS epidemic. These anxieties about the body are then conceptualized (and historically contextualized) along two dimensions : 1) the political proximity between HIV/AIDS activists and computer hackers during the FDA clinical trials controversy of 1987-88 ; 2) the ideological reinforcement provided by academic progressive elements to these political actions.
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Antonio Casilli. A history of virulence. The body and computer culture in the 1980s. Body and Society, SAGE Publications, 2010, 16 (4), pp.1-31. ⟨10.1177/1357034X10383880⟩. ⟨hal-00661414⟩

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