Tulane Home Tulane Home

Sociology Colloquium: Celeste Watkins-Hayes, Northwestern

Uptown Campus

Remaking a Life: How Women Living with HIV/AIDS Confront Inequality

In the face of life-threatening news, how do we reevaluate and transform our lives? Starting in 2005, Northwestern professor of Sociology and African American Studies Celeste Watkins-Hayes spent more than a decade documenting the experiences of over 100 women living with HIV/AIDS in Chicago and beyond.

Remaking a Life uses the HIV/AIDS epidemic as a lens to understand how women achieve radical improvements in their social wellbeing in the face of social stigma and economic disadvantage. Drawing on interviews with nationally recognized AIDS activists and policy experts as well as women living with HIV/AIDS, Watkins-Hayes takes readers on an uplifting journey chronicling women’s movements from “dying from” to “thriving despite” HIV/AIDS as they fight for their physical, emotional, economic, and political survival. With an eye towards improving the lives of women, Remaking a Life provides strategies to encourage private, nonprofit, and government agencies to successfully collaborate, and shares policy ideas with the hope of alleviating the injuries of inequality faced by those living with HIV/AIDS every day.

Remaking a Life speaks to the profound success of the HIV/AIDS community over the past 30 years, and how it can serve as a roadmap for how we can combat today’s public health crises.  The book was published by the University of California Press.

Celeste Watkins-Hayes, PhD is professor of sociology and African American Studies at Northwestern University and a faculty fellow in Northwestern’s Institute for Policy Research.


Sociology Department