It seems strange now given the enormity of the situation, but at the time it wasn’t easy for artists to directly address the [AIDS] crisis in their music, and even in the ‘80s coming out as gay could rightly be considered career suicide. Neil Tennant has been open with his sexuality for over two decades now, but in the ‘80s he was understandably a bit coy. Chris Gerard for Popmatters
Behaviour was created at a time when the world was besieged by turmoil over the burgeoning HIV/AIDS crisis. By 1990 millions had been impacted by the disease, and the gay community was roiled by fear, loss, outrage, and the fierce determination of growing activism. In April of that year the death of Ryan White, a young boy with hemophilia who acquired the disease through a blood transfusion, brought a wider awareness and sensitivity to the crisis. As the death toll mounted, the group ACT UP staged highly publicized protests at the National Institutes of Health demanding expansion of HIV/AIDS treatments and clinical trials. By the end of the year, AIDS had become the second leading cause of death among American men aged 25 to 44 years.
The apotheosis of the deliberately boring normcore turtleneck was found on Steve Jobs, who arrived at his stark trademark look after striking up a friendship with the designer Issey Miyake, who gave him 100 or so of them. Troy Patterson for the New York Times
I can only imagine that Issey Miyake might bristle endlessly unto his death with this association that will never be forgotten, of a rich man so completely and utterly lacking in personal style that he demand one of the finest craftsmen in clothing make for him a shapeless fisherman’s sweater, bearing no resemblance to the craft for which he was hired. Read the entire piece at the New York Times.