As a student in English 1102, my classmates and I are to research the AIDS quilts from the NAMES Project. The quilts that are made and showed are to remember the loved ones many families have lost due to HIV and AIDS. The NAMES foundation has come a long way since it was first founded. Back then, it allowed people to portray somehow the young, beautiful soul that was lost and to spread awareness. The quilts that are a part of the NAMES Project come from thousands and thousands of people and possibly even more.
Now, in the 21st century, HIV and AIDS are more known, and people are well aware of these diseases. The research aspect of this assignment isn’t to dig up old stories and simply see how many people had HIV and AIDS but to see the pain the family and friends had to go through during the darkest of times. These quilts, represent a battle to survive and an angel that had a whole life to live and to do great things on this planet, but never got to. In other words, these quilts tell a story about the victims and how much they were loved by the people that were around them.
My goal is to do these quilt justice and to respect the names of the people I am researching thoroughly but also to find out what these people could have done had they not had HIV and AIDS. In the quilt, “A City of Hope & Love E. ST. Louis” my primary focus was to see what happened in E. St. Louis. Also to know why the artist, whoever the artist is, decided to make two opposing viewpoints of a city. What metaphor was he or she trying to portray?
A City of Hope & Love E. ST. Louis. “The NAMES Project Foundation,” 117 Luckie St. NW: Atlanta, GA 30303.
The quilt, “A City of Hope & Love E. ST. Louis” does not have a known record of who made this quilt, but the NAMES Project is a valuable resource because they are the ones that keep all of the quilts on record. The only credible source I could find in this quilt was the city of Missouri, E. St. Louis that describes the poor and broken city from the very beginning. The primary purpose of this quilt is to emphasize the unfortunate and harsh treatment of people with AIDS, especially in E. St. Louis by addressing two different perspectives on a city. Because the quilts come from the NAMES Project, the audience can be researchers, victims of HIV and AIDS, family, friends, and even students that want to look into the past. Any medical professional or someone who has HIV and AIDS and in a way feels all alone might benefit from these quilts and the entire foundation’s mission.
This source is my quilt. In other words, this source is my primary research objective, and my entire assignment was to research this quilt. In the beginning, I thought this quilt would give me decent information, but turns out it was much harder than I initially thought it would be. Because this quilt had no name of the artist, no letters or other resources for me to go on, I had to research keywords or from symbols that were stitched onto the quilt. It was indeed a tremendous effort, but I can honestly say my researching skills have gotten better because of the quilt, “A City of Hope & Love E. ST. Louis.”
East St. Louis: One City’s Story. “Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis,” 14 July 2016, https://www.stlouisfed.org/publications/bridges/winter-20022003/east-st-louis-one-citys-story.
The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis is a federal banking website that describes the history of “East St. Louis: One City’s Story,” making it a very credible source. In this source, the writers mention the history of Andrew Carnegie and J.P. Morgan by adding statistics and one on one interviews to bring awareness of the downfall and slow growth of the city. The Federal Reserve Banking system wants both the citizens and residents of Missouri to see the gradual growth and increase in industrial profit since the 1900s. This website is excellent for those that are into profit and business especially in Missouri. Also, this information would be useful for entrepreneurs, or anyone wanting to invest in a bank to get a good foundation on how to start from something small and to increase the playing field.
Although I did not have any correlation with the increase in industrial profits of Missouri in my AIDS research, I did learn about the unfortunate part of Missouri, being E. St. Louis. This source helped me understand why the city was left and isolated. The cause of the isolation during the time of AIDS made those who did have AIDS to feel extraordinarily alone and to fend for themselves. The Federal Reserve Bank helped me see the history of the East.
Hanlon, Michael. HIV/AIDS: a timeline of the diease and its mutations. “The Telegraph,” Telgraph Media Group, 29 Nov. 2011, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/health/8920567/HIVAids-a-timeline-of-the-disease-and-its-mutations.html.
Michael Hanlon, a writer for The Telegraph, is the author for the source I used in my primary research description titled “HIV/AIDS: a timeline of the disease and its mutations.” Michael Hanlon used a very different approach in his article; he went with the timeline approach mapping out how HIV and AIDS made it to the 21st century. Michael perhaps wants people to see how AIDS has been an incredibly long disease that goes back centuries. The audience for this article is people that are interested in anniversaries of particular organizations, in this case, the AIDS Association (The Red Ribbon). However, this post is not limited to those that are into organizations but can also be useful for a student doing research projects in health class or on the history of AIDS.
This source wasn’t that helpful regarding my AIDS research, but it was, in fact, a great way to expand my knowledge of AIDS and of how long this disease has been circulating for centuries. It wasn’t useful regarding talking specifically about E. St. Louis, Missouri like it was mentioned on my quilt. I didn’t get any distinctive record of what exactly happened in Missouri at all, which is why it wasn’t as useful as I would have liked for it to be.
Rectenwald, Miranda. AIDS in the Metro-East Area: The Politics of Treatment, Care, and Housing. “University Libraries,” Washington University in St. Louis, 3 Feb. 2017, https://library.wustl.edu/aids-metro-east-area-politics-treatment-care-housing/.
Miranda Rectenwald, a researcher at the Universty of Washington in St. Louis, who is a part of mapping LGBTQ St. Louis, Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies, talks about “AIDS in the Metro-East Area: The Politics of Treatment, Care, and Housing.” Miranda Rectenwald incorporated research from the 1900s around different cities in the United States and from the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois. Miranda Rectenwald’s goal is to address the two brave souls of Sister Thomas and Sister Mary Ellen Rombach who helped those that had AIDS and also along the way spread the Christian way. History majors or people with a passion for history are the intended audiences. Additional to people with history passions, people into healthcare and legal activities can benefit from the history of the Sisters.
This source is the most significant and most helpful source that relates to my primary source description, because of the Sisters involvement during the horrible times of AIDS; I was allowed to finish my research and find out exactly what happened in E. St. Louis. I was also interested in what I read because I thought the courageous act of the Sister was indeed very heroic.
The Red Ribbon. “World Aids Day Powered By Nat,” National AIDS Trust, 2016, https://www.worldaidsday.org/the-red-ribbon.
This source does not have a specific author but is powered by Nat and is related to “The Red Ribbon” association. This source is connected to the National World AIDS Day, and it mentions the history of the symbol “Red Ribbon.” The contributors want the entire world to become aware of AIDS day and to join together to make those that do have AIDS feel as if they are not alone. In this case, the intended audience is everyone who is interested in making a difference in the world or who likes to voice out their opinion. I also think those that are very democratic would follow this organization and would also join in on it to help spread the awareness.
This specific source helped me understand the symbol of the red ribbon that was enlarged onto the quilt. At first, I did not know what the emblem exactly meant but after reading the website I fully understood. This website also has other types of information on the entire organization and its mission. It was in a way like the NAMES Foundation, but the only difference is that it relates to the Red Ribbon instead of quilts.