MCC Lecture Series Looks at the Criminalization of Sickness March 15

Punishing Disease: HIV and the criminalization of sickness book poster

The MCC Lecture Series continues with Dr. Trevor Hoppe discussing “Punishing Disease: HIV and the criminalization of sickness” on Thursday, March 15, in Stevenson Center Room 1100. The talk begins at 7 p.m. and is free and open to the public.

Dr. Trevor Hoppe

Dr. Trevor Hoppe

Hoppe, an assistant professor of sociology at SUNY Albany, has been crisscrossing the nation speaking about his new book Punishing Disease: HIV and the criminalization of sickness (University of California Press, 2017). During his talk, he will examine local cases that informed his work.

“Dr. Hoppe is an engaging speaker who is on the forefront of changing the way we think about disease,” said Andy Wible, MCC philosophy instructor and director of the MCC Lecture Series. “Patients, friends, medical professionals, and the general public will find his presentation and book enlightening. We are fortunate to have such a prominent expert join us.”

“From the very beginning of the epidemic, AIDS was linked to punishment,” noted the University of California Press in describing Hoppe’s book. “Calls to punish people living with HIV—mostly stigmatized minorities—began before doctors had even settled on a name for the disease.”

Punishing Disease looks at how HIV was transformed from sickness to badness under the criminal law and investigates the consequences of inflicting penalties on people living with disease. Now that the door to criminalizing sickness is open, what other ailments will follow? With moves in state legislatures to extend HIV-specific criminal laws to include diseases such as hepatitis and meningitis, the question is more than academic.”

Hoppe, who also co-authored The war on sex (Duke University Press, 2017), earned both his Ph.D. and Master of Public Health from the University of Michigan. He earned a master’s degree from San Francisco State University and a bachelor’s degree the University of North Carolina.

For more information on the lecture, contact Any Wible at (231) 777-0626.