In 1981, a medical report was published that described the death of a Spanish man with symptoms of Kaposi’s sarcoma, an illness that was increasingly linked to AIDS. Two years later, other reports detailed the illnesses and deaths of two young hemophiliac brothers in Spain who died only months after receiving blood transfusions. This article analyzes the mediated response to these cases, along with the construction of an origins narrative around the outbreak of AIDS in Spain. The origins story created in this moment in Spain would determine not only the public reaction to the illness, but the legal and governmental response, in turn provoking a true crisis of modernity within Spain. By analyzing these first cases and their subsequent media coverage, this article examines the images and words that constructed a unilateral history of the origins of HIV/AIDS in Spain.


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pp. 143-166
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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