Race in Epidemiology
Black History Month is an annual observance for remembrance of important people and events in the history of the African diaspora. In 2016 we mark Black History Month with a programme of events that focus on RACE@LSHTM and ask the questions: What Do We Teach? How Do We Research? Who Do We Employ?
There is a wide consensus among social scientists about ‘race’ being a social construct with no biological basis. With the advent of emerging DNA technologies, many question if human genetic variation really correspond to these doctrinal ‘racial’ categories. Some epidemiologists and geneticists, argue that ‘racial’ groups are biologically correlated with specific traits, and use these categories as a baseline to track diseases. Others, inspired by the Human Genome Project’s results, which announced that human genetic sequences are essentially the same, hope for a new model of society in which the concept of ‘race’ becomes obsolete.
The aim of this seminar will be an interdisciplinary dialogue that will revisit ‘racial’ categories, and their use and misuse, in epidemiological studies. Furthermore, it will attempt to initiate an exchange of ideas on ‘race’-based disparities, and investigate how influential is the role of medical studies in the perpetuation of ‘racial’ inequalities.
Other events in the series include:
- Screening of Pressure & discussion with Charlie Phillips on Wednesday 12 October
- On the Sofa: Pathways to Success for Black People on Wednesday 13 October
- Screening of Baseball in the Time of Cholera & discussion on Monday 17 October
- Race, Infections and Zombies: Talk and Film Screening on Tuesday 18 October
- Intersecting Race & Disability on Tuesday 18 October
- Debate on Surveying Race at the School on Thursday 20 October