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Safety in Numbers

Safer Sex and Gay Men

by Edward King

Safety in Numbers is my 1993 book on AIDS and gay men. It records three main areas:

  1. the initial spread of HIV among gay communities
  2. the success of early community-based safer sex campaigns in stemming HIV transmission
  3. the de-gaying of AIDS in the late 1980s, when preventing the predicted heterosexual epidemic became the new priority

Two chunks of the book are currently available on this site:

  1. the section analysing the risk of HIV transmission through oral sex
  2. the chapter which describes the de-gaying of AIDS: what the terms means; why it happened; who did it; and the harm it did to safer sex campaigns for gay men

I have also included full publication information and sleeve notes.

Safety in Numbers can be purchased on the Internet from on-line bookshops by following these links. In the UK, order from The Internet Bookshop. In the USA, order from Books.


Chapter 1 – Tracing the Epidemic

Chapter 2 – Changing Behaviour

Chapter 3 – Promoting Safer Sex

Chapter 4 – Sustaining Safer Sex?

Chapter 5 – The De-gaying of AIDS

Chapter 6 – Making Myths

Chapter 7 – Re-gaying AIDS