Research

Anthony’s dissertation research, From Risk to Reality: Race, Class, and HIV in an Age of Uncertainty, explores how people deemed to be the most "at-risk" come to understand, for themselves, their own relation to a given illness or disease. Through semi-structured interviews and participant-observation at a health advocacy group, his research specifically examines how HIV-negative Black and Latino men who have sex with men (MSM) are making sense of their place in the contemporary HIV/AIDS epidemic. In this work, he argues that individuals with demographic backgrounds associated with heightened disease risk reflexively engage with their own race, class, and sexuality in determining whether or not an illness is actually a “risk” within the sociocultural context of their lives. This reflexive process gives way to diverse framings of risk individuals employ to understand the threats HIV/AIDS may or may not pose to their bodily health and/or social lives. Individuals can also come to view HIV/AIDS as personally irrelevant or a non-issue, comprising a framing that escapes a definitive rhetoric of "risk" altogether.

From Risk to Reality contends that these multiple framings constitute a variance of perceptions about HIV/AIDS that can influence an individual’s health-relevant behaviors, such as their use of prevention tools and their romantic/sexual partner selection strategies. Throughout this dissertation, Anthony develops and makes the case for what he defines as the “Ecological Social Risk Framework,” a novel comprehensive framework of analysis that elucidates how a person’s perceptions of personal illness & disease risk are produced through interactions that occur at the individual, relational, institutional, and cultural levels of society.