Mark Ravenhill & Joachim Dinse


labor leerIn the 1980s the diagnosis of "HIV positive" turned those concerned into characters of a fatal narrative. Within the next ten years their immune system would collapse, the end of which was death through AIDS. Many gave up their professions, planned their own funerals. In the mid-1990s medical advances then turned the fatal illness into a chronic one. Today there is thus a whole generation of HIV positive persons who never counted on having a future and have yet survived. For all those who had made peace with their fate this meant a new but also difficult outlook on life. All of a sudden they were “undead”. The dramatist Mark Ravenhill, HIV positive himself, and the psychotherapist Joachim Dinse discussed the concrete menace of death and the difficulty of shaping a narrative out of the “non event” of life with AIDS. They were joined by Bruce LaBruce.



Mark Ravenhill studied drama and English at Bristol University; a freelance director, he also spent several years as the literary director of the Paines Plough Theatre Company in London. Following its premier, his first full-length play Shopping and Fucking was sold out for weeks in London’s West End and went on to become a worldwide success. Besides plays, adaptations, radio dramas, and scripts, he also writes for The Guardian.

Joachim Dinse is a psychological therapist and works in his own practice in Hamburg. Since the 1980s the psychotherapeutic work with homosexual men, in particular patients with HIV and AIDS, has been a focus of his work.