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'AIDS in New York: The First Five Years' Opens At New York Historical Society

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New York Historical Society

The New-York Historical Society is offering a rare look back at the conflicts which defined the early years of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in its latest exhibition.

Titled "AIDS in New York: The First Five Years," the new show "brings together many dimensions of history: scientific, political, social, and economic," according to the Historical Society's Senior Director of Resources and Programs Jean Ashton.

"The epidemic disease that erupted in the early 1980s, and that eventually became identified as AIDS, is not past," Ashton, who curated the exhibit, told The Huffington Post in an email. "The societal effects and conflicts created by the disease are still happening. And that is why we believe it is important for the New-York Historical Society to re-examine the events of thirty years ago in this city—to bring them into perspective for a public that is now more than a generation removed from them, but that continues to live with their consequences."

Among the many poignant images found in the exhibit: a 1983 placard calling for a march in support of HIV/AIDS victims, and a poster from the original stage production of "The Normal Heart," activist/playwright Larry Kramer's now-legendary work.

"AIDS in New York: The First Five Years" is actually the latest in a series on the theme of public health and medical history displayed at the Historical Society. As Ashton pointed out, earlier displays have focused on the development of insulin as a drug to treat diabetes and a 1947 campaign to vaccinate the public against smallpox.

"AIDS in New York: The First Five Years" runs through Sept. 15, 2013. For more information, click here.

Take a look at some photos from the exhibit below:

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AIDS in New York: The First Five Years
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