In the ’80s and ’90s, Thursday night “must-see TV!” was entertaining and educational, especially A Different World. For a generation growing up, this show was an introduction to college life, political awareness and social responsibility. In the show’s fourth season, Debbie Allen directed a special episode, “If I Should Die Before I Wake,” that tackled AIDS head on.

Twenty-three years later, the episode is still relevant to today’s conversations about this disease. Take a quick look back at some of the powerful lessons about HIV/AIDS this show put its spotlight on:

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