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  • Summary

  • From the co-creators of Slow Burn, Fiasco is a narrative podcast that transports listeners into the day-to-day reality of America’s most pivotal historical events. 

    Using original interviews with dozens of key players, host Leon Neyfakh brings to life the forgotten twists and turns of the past while shedding light on the present day. The new season of Fiasco goes deep on the AIDS epidemic in America, with a special focus on the early years of the crisis, when a diagnosis was tantamount to a death sentence. The eight-part series looks at the mystery and missteps around identifying and treating a new, contagious disease, and what it took to get the public - and the government - to care.

    ©2022 Prologue Projects (P)2022 Prologue Projects
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Episodes
  • Feb 22 2022

    From the co-creators of Slow Burn, Fiasco is a narrative podcast that transports listeners into the day-to-day reality of America’s most pivotal historical events. 

    Using original interviews with dozens of key players, host Leon Neyfakh brings to life the forgotten twists and turns of the past while shedding light on the present day. The new season of Fiasco goes deep on the AIDS epidemic in America, with a special focus on the early years of the crisis, when a diagnosis was tantamount to a death sentence. The eight-part series looks at the mystery and missteps around identifying and treating a new, contagious disease, and what it took to get the public - and the government - to care.

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    1 min
  • Mar 24 2022

    How doctors and scientists responded to the arrival of a strange and terrifying new disease.

    You can find a list of books, articles, and documentaries we used in our research at bit.ly/fiascopod

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    49 mins
  • Mar 31 2022

    As the AIDS crisis worsens, gay men in New York City improvise a response, forming alliances and drawing battle lines.

    You can find a list of books, articles, and documentaries we used in our research at bit.ly/fiascopod

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    49 mins

What listeners say about Fiasco: The AIDS Crisis

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Great listen

An informative and well put together podcast looking at recent history. I wasn't old enough at the time to understand all that was going so this has really filled in the gaps. It has a wide variety of voices and sources drawn together to tell the story. A great listen.

2 people found this helpful

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A really powerful and well-told documentary

I had actually learned quite a lot about this topic before but still found a lot of new information in this podcast, and the information I did know was told in a unique enough way for it to really add something new to the existing content. It's really well told and I love the way each episode does a deep dive on a particular area or aspect of the crisis, rather than a straight narrative approach.

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wonderful series

a thought-provoking yet gentle, reminding us how social stigma is a powerful enemy in promoting health.

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Gutted this is final episode!

One of the best podcasts I’ve heard; riveting & even though I thought I knew a lot of AIDS history, I still learnt a lot. Particularly poignant in this time of Covid.

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Tragic and informative

I found this so worth the listen, I was a young teenager in early 80s so missed most of this so found it fascinating, tragic ,horrific ,heartbreaking, and infuriating in equal measures

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  • MB
  • 30-03-22

Why it is important to remember

On a hot humid New Orleans summer afternoon in 1981. I entered my local coffee shop the owner handed me the NYT article she saved for me. "Rare Cancer Seen in 41 Homosexuals" My reaction was this is IMPOSSIBLE!

Now many decades later and seeing another pandemic; we did not learn the lessons from the Fiasco of The AIDS Crisis. I'm still fighting as a survivor. Every friend, lover, and Gay man that I knew in 1981 is dead. There is a lesson to be learned here. Tell the story about survival, learn from those mistakes. Be active and fight for all. The phrase Public Health heath for all.

I want to share a personal thank you to Dr. Greene interviewed here. You helped renew my spirit to fight.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Rhys Brock
  • 26-03-22

Informative and Entertaining

Currently, only the first episode has been released but I’m eager to hear more. Bringing light to the state of confusion the AIDS epidemic caused, the narrator is able to show the experiences of both confused doctors and these doomed patients. Love love love this!

6 people found this helpful

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  • KLZ
  • 22-04-22

wow!

Very well written, read and organized look into the beginning of the AIDS epidemic. Haunting as we continue our struggle through the COVID epidemic. Will we ever learn?

4 people found this helpful

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  • KathieLavine
  • 03-05-22

Fascinating.

Compelling. Sad. At the time it all looked so different. 40 years later I am appalled at how we treated the sick people...as though they somehow asked for their illness. The withholding of lifesaving drugs for the sake of data...heartbreaking.

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  • Adam R.
  • 02-05-22

A look back at the beginning of the AIDS pandemic

I'm enjoying this look back at how the public, government, and doctors reacted to a new pandemic...and see so many parallels to today's COVID pandemic. Having been born after the discover and a baby through many of the developing years, I had only a hint of the story. At many times the details given here are prime example of the total depravity of mankind as evidenced by disgusting behavior not even seen in the animal kingdom...I can see why many on the "outside" (in the early days) wanted nothing to do with helping, but can also see why that would be infuriating from the "inside". Politics and hardened hearts of man lead to a loss of compassion for mankind. I pray that all with this terrible disease would be healed, for the researchers minds and hands to be led to a cure, and mostly that God would use this terrible disease to bring His chosen children to him in repentance through His great grace. May we, one day, look back on this plague as a cured disease in the annals of mankind.

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  • Wayne w.
  • 11-04-22

Discovery left out

I was surprised they did not go into the "why" of AIDS more. How it began. And the discovery of the disease and how it got its name etc.

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  • DIY manAmazon Customer
  • 08-06-22

great stuff

A very good listen that never stood still for too long and yet is filled with relevant and little known information that I could follow. I can't wait to listen to it again.

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  • Dr Rick
  • 31-05-22

Why was and is prevention so ignored?

Like nearly all journalism, the useful facts are neglected.

The most important thing to know about HIV is that over 90% of transmissions occur when an infected penis is inserted in an unprotected anus.
That’s absolutely critical information.
HIV is not easy to transmit when genitals are used “normally”. Unlike HPV and HSV, it doesn’t penetrate intact skin. Normal coitus has less than 1 in 1000 chance of transmission from an infected partner to an uninflected unless there is a break in the skin or an eruption of another STD/STI/VD.
I don’t know how effective condoms are at preventing infection through an anus but probably very good if used properly. (An infected man should ALWAYS use a condom)

There are new and very expensive drugs promoted strongly (like oxycontin was 20 years ago) for prevention. Theoretically, an anally receptive partner can lower risk from about 2% to about 0.5% by taking one of these drugs daily for at least 2 weeks prior to the sex encounter. I’m amazed that lowering risk of a death sentence from about 1 in 60 to about 1 in 200 per encounter is worth spending $2000 per month. If you wonder why insurance premiums are high, know that doctors and insurance companies are readily going along with this scheme, the copay is often zero. A huge problem with this fad is many men use this strategy instead of using a condom. A condom is probably 5-20 times more effective than drugs like D*scovy and hugely cheaper. But apparently going without a condom is important in some cultures. Organized medicine is very pleased to distract its customers from rational choices. Beware.

1 person found this helpful

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  • nchutz
  • 26-05-22

Outstanding

A must listen - history we have been missing. This should be in every school curriculum.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Chelsea
  • 21-05-22

Such a well produced, educational, important podcast

My headline summarizes how I feel about it, but I binge listened in one day while doing yard work and I learned so much. An incredible podcast that everyone should listen to.

1 person found this helpful