About this issue
This issue of the Psychology & AIDS Exchange newsletter is devoted to the topic of heterosexually active men. Rather than simply reviewing or highlighting literature that can be found elsewhere, this issue’s aim is to pose interesting questions and ideas about topics not widely explored elsewhere. Hearty congratulations and thanks are extended to Dr. Lisa Bowleg, associate professor in the Department of Community Health and Prevention in the School of Public Health at Drexel University, who wrote the lead overview article for this theme-based edition. Dr. Bowleg not only wrote her article but also contacted the other authors contributing to this edition and served as coordinator, organizer, interviewer and editor.
An article by Dr. Seth Noar explores critical ingredients for heterosexual men’s inclusion in interventions, as well as the challenges of such programs. Another article, by physician and HIV prevention researcher Dr. David Malebranche of Emory University, highlights the phenomenon of the “down low,” men who have sex with men and women but who do not identify as gay or bisexual. He argues for a more sophisticated understanding of the contexts in which men of color have sex. Not surprisingly, if the topic of heterosexual men and HIV as a whole is invisible, so too are their narratives. Thus, the first-person account of William Brawner, an HIV/AIDS activist and a heterosexual man living with HIV, is included.
Also included in this edition is a description of an innovative HIV-prevention program for heterosexually active men, Straight Up!: A Safe Haven for Heterosexual Men of Color. In addition, a spirited interview with the women — yes, women — behind Straight Up! is included. I hope this issue will stimulate a much overdue conversation on the HIV prevention needs of heterosexually active men.
John R. Anderson, PhD
APA Office on AIDS