In the Blood: Sickle Cell Anemia and the Politics of Race

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University of Pennsylvania Press, Jan 7, 1999 - Medical - 163 pages
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Although it strikes individuals from a variety of backgrounds, sickle cell anemia has been known throughout the twentieth century as a "black" disease. In the Blood looks at why this is, telling the story of the racialization of sickle cell anemia in the decades after its identification in 1910 until today. Tapper examines anthropological, genetic, medical, and political texts to illustrate how significant a role medical and anthropological constructs have played in shaping the way Africans and African Americans have been perceived and acted upon. Using some long-ignored materials, he outlines the predominant discourses on sickle cell anemia and race in the twentieth century. In the Blood is both a fine example of writing against racism and a bold statement about the social construction of race and disease.

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About the author (1999)

Melbourne Tapper teaches anthropology at the University of Texas, Austin.

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