In “Archives of Feeling”: AIDS in the UK c.1987’ I trace the emotional landscape of Britain at a key turning point in the history of AIDS. Drawing chiefly on the astonishing testimonies of around 600 largely straight men and women, I explore the feelings at stake in the epidemic, how they related to press and politics, how they shaped everyday lives, and how they played out for those dealing most directly with the escalating crisis. I argue that such ‘archives of feeling’ are fundamental to our understanding of intersecting social and intimate lives – past and present.
Professor Matt Cook’s Inaugural Lecture took place at Birkbeck, University of London on1 December 2016, World Aids Day,
Matt Cook is Professor of Modern History at Birkbeck, University of London. He is Birkbeck Director of the Raphael Samuel History Centre and the author and editor of a number of books, including London and the Culture of Homosexuality (2003) and Queer Domesticities (2014)