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Seen, But Not Heard: AIDS, Sexual Politics and the Untold War Against Black Women (Preview) cover photo

Seen, But Not Heard: AIDS, Sexual Politics and the Untold War Against Black Women (Preview) 2008

Recommended with reservations

Distributed by Third World Newsreel, 545 Eighth Avenue, 10th Floor, New York, NY 10018; 212-947-9277
Produced by Cyrille Phipps
Directed by Cyrille Phipps
DVD, color, 88 min.

Sr. High - Adult
African American Studies, AIDS/HIV, American Studies, Death and Dying, Health Sciences, Sociology

Date Entered: 09/09/2009

Reviewed by Linda Frederiksen, Washington State University, Vancouver, WA

Although a global epidemic for all people of color, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, African Americans are disproportionately affected by AIDS/HIV, with more illnesses, deaths and shorter survival rates than other races or ethnicities. A black woman is 19 times more likely to contract the disease than her Caucasian counterpart. For 25-34 year old non-Hispanic black women, AIDS/HIV is a leading cause of death in this country. Information on prevention, treatment and cure is not being provided nor is it reaching these women in time to stop the illness from spreading.

With grant funding from the Paul Robeson Fund for Independent Media, Cuban-American filmmaker and teacher Cyrille Phipps began in 2006 to interview activists, advocates and people living with AIDS/HIV in New York City. This short film is the product of that initial work and intersperses personal accounts with statistics and other facts about the illness. The short film is currently being used to raise awareness, awaken a sense of urgency and gather more financial support for the project which will eventually produce a full-length documentary. Until then, this extended movie trailer provides an effective public service message about the horrors of the disease and toll it is taking on an already marginalized population.