Poyao Huang F'19

Poyao  Huang
Doctoral Candidate
Communication and Science Studies
University of California, San Diego

Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships 2019
Doctoral Candidate
Communication and Science Studies
University of California, San Diego
Becoming HIV Negative on PrEP: The Material Culture of HIV Medicine and Gay Taiwanese Men’s Sexual Health

This dissertation is an ethnographic study of the material culture of HIV medicine and gay men’s sexual health in the intra-Asian region of Taiwan and Thailand. Building on two years of fieldwork, it explores the implementation of Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis—PrEP, a new type of HIV prevention medicine—in relation to the Taiwanese government-led demonstration project, the AIDS advocate-initiated drug-access model, gay men’s medical tourism to Thailand, and gay men’s sexual communication with social applications. By detailing PrEP’s social trajectory and gay men's lived experiences with becoming HIV negative on PrEP, this project addresses larger issues about the marketization of HIV medicine, the politics of self-medication, and the transformation of queer sociality in the digital realm.