El Precio del Engaño

Dublin Core


El Precio del Engaño


AIDS (Disease)
HACER, The Hispanic AIDS Committee for Education and Resources
LLEGÓ, National Latino/a Lesbian and Gay Organization


This fotonovela is an educational resource published in 1988-1989. The short dramatic story in Spanish educates members of the Latino community how about AIDS affects more than the LGBTQ community.

The fotonovela was an interesting form of media which used comic book style format with photos as visuals. This fotonovela genre originated after World War II in Italy and spain as film stills and became its own form of print media in the mid 1970s. The fotonovela was hugely popular in Latin America beginning in Cuba in the late 1940s. At the height of its popularity in the 1980s in Mexico, the fotonovela became a useful educational tool for its engaging comic book format and readability for individuals of all education levels.

The dramatized fotonovela recounts a story of Rudy who inadvertently contracts AIDS. He is unsure whether he contracted the disease from sleeping with another man, his friend Paco, or from sharing a needle while inject drugs with Lydia. Aside form the manner in which he contracted the virus, the fotonovela clearly educates the public that unfortunately no one is immune and there are many ways to contract AIDS. A large misconception of the time was that only homosexuals could contract HIV or AIDS. The fotonovela ends with Rudy's wife, Marta, contracting AIDS and dying.

The latino community's conservative values often contributed to a lack of education regarding the HIV AIDS epidemic. Misinformation was spread, such as the dubious claim that only homosexuals contract the disease. Inaccurate information contributed to higher numbers of cases (Snelling). This informative pamphlet uses the fotonovela narrative style as a means to educate the public in an attainable informative level in an engaging way.

The piece uses derogatory language, such as the word 'maricon' showing that this fotonovela opts to side with the latino community's conservative values regarding homosexuality and premarital sex (Garcia). The term 'maricon' also amplifies the conflict of gay latinos with toxic masculinity, or machismo (Ayala-Walsh, Díaz, Caston).


(H.A.C.E.R.), El Comite de Hispanos para Educación y Recursos sobe el SIDA, Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center Resident Theatre Company Los Actores of San Antonio




Spanish, English




The Reagan Era, 1980s, The AIDS HIV Epidemic


Physical print media


The Hispanic AIDS Committee for Education and Resources (H.A.C.E.R.)


LLILAS Benson Latin American Studies and Collections


Ayala-Walsh, Johanna, et al. Liberating Machismo: Deconstructing the Stereotypes of Latinidad in Alberto Korda’s Guerrillero Heroico. ProQuest Dissertations Publishing, 1 Jan. 2012, http://search.proquest.com/docview/1315765965/.

Garcia, Bernardo C. The Development of a Latino Gay Identity. Taylor and Francis, 2014, doi:10.4324/97813157960695.

Caston, Teresa, et al. Machismo: A Latin Culture of Honor? A Quantitative Study. ProQuest Dissertations Publishing, 1 Jan. 2015, http://search.proquest.com/docview/2207615088/.

Diaz, Rafael M. Latino Gay Men and HIV : Culture, Sexuality, and Risk Behavior / Rafael M. Díaz. Routledge, 1998.

“Fotonovelas.” Encyclopedia of Sex and Gender: Culture Society History, Encyclopedia.com, 1 May 2020, www.encyclopedia.com/social-sciences/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/fotonovelas.

Snelling, Dana, et al. “HIV/AIDS KNOWLEDGE, WOMEN’S EDUCATION, EPIDEMIC SEVERITY AND PROTECTIVE SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR IN LOW- AND MIDDLE-INCOME COUNTRIES.” Journal of Biosocial Science, vol. 39, no. 3, Cambridge University Press, May 2007, pp. 421–42, doi:10.1017/S0021932006001465.

Valle, R., Yamada, A. M., & Matiella, A. C. (2006). Fotonovelas:a health literacy tool for educating latino older adults about dementia. Regular Research Article, 30(1)


(H.A.C.E.R.), El Comite de Hispanos para Educación y Recursos sobe el SIDA, Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center Resident Theatre Company Los Actores of San Antonio, “El Precio del Engaño,” Community Narratives: Uncovering Hidden Perspectives, accessed November 30, 2021, https://givingvoicetohiddenhistories.omeka.net/items/show/283.

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