AIDS, as a useful analytical tool, uncovers facets that remain hidden behind modernity's alleged rationality. The dramatic coexistence of sexuality and death, of Eros and Thanatos, causes self-appeasing distinctions between normality and pathology, progress and tradition, illness and sin, the "good self" and the menacing "other. "In Greece, over-medicalization and stigmatization are the two fear-controlling mechanisms against AIDS. Specific historical contingencies reinforce defensive barriers between "in-groups" and "out-groups," transforming the AIDS victim into a menacing enemy. What distinguishes Greece's reaction to AIDS even more is a form of narcissism creating an illusion of Greece's immunity to that epidemic. Invulnerability and narcissism are revived and perpetuated by fetishization of the family and of national myths asserting the indestructibility of the Greek nation and race.


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pp. 83-97
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