African American AIDS History Project

DiAna DiAna Lecture at Concordia University


Dublin Core


DiAna DiAna Lecture at Concordia University


iAna DiAna's presentation of "DiAna's Hair Ego" by Ellen Spiro at Concordia University, followed by lecture and questions.
DiAna DiAna is an African-American South Carolina-based grassroots prevention activist and hairstylist who became the subject of the American documentary film DiAna's Hair Ego in 1991. She was one of the early pioneers of AIDS education, having begun prevention work in her hair salon in 1986 by handing out condoms to her clients, soon after which she founded the nonprofit South Carolina AIDS Education Network (SCAEN). Run by volunteers and funded by donations from salon clients and visitors looking for a way to help, SCAEN has provided one-to-one AIDS information to more than nine thousand people living in South Carolina, fostering projects such as AIDS Busters, which served to bring safer sex information directly to Columbia's youth, and an AIDS education and support hot line run from DiAna's own home. In 1989, DiAna joined forces with ACT UP to stage a State House rally for the rights of people with HIV/AIDS in South Carolina. A filmmaker borrowed footage from the rally and from DiAna's salon to make the short film DiAna's Hair Ego, which was honored by the American Film Institute and the International Public Television Conference (INPUT) in Dublin. Opening with a screening of this terrific documentary, DiAna's Concordia talk will reflect on her experiences as an AIDS prevention activist and safe sex educator, examine the impact of grassroots organizations, and take a look at what she is doing now within her community.



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“DiAna DiAna Lecture at Concordia University,” African American AIDS History Project, accessed October 18, 2018,