Department of Sociology Colloquium Series: David Williams: Race, Racism and Health: Needed Research to Capture Emerging Risks


Tuesday, April 17, 2018, 3:00pm to 5:00pm


William James Hall, 33 Kirkland Street, Room 1550

Department of Sociology Colloquium Series presentation by David Williams, Harvard University, Professor of Public Health and of African and African American Studies.

Race, Racism and Health: Needed Research to Capture Emerging Risks

Racial Inequities in health are observed in racialized societies around the world. Sociologists have long recognized the centrality of socially-structured living and working conditions to shape the social distribution of disease. Sociologists identified socioeconomic status (SES) as a fundamental cause of inequities in health and have given growing attention, in recent years, to the role of racism as a driver of racial health inequities. However, this body of research on racism and health centrally focuses on self-reported measures of discrimination. As important as these are, there is an urgent need for more rigorous and comprehensive assessment of the multiple pathways linking racism to health. There is a need for increased research attention to documenting the health impact of 1) changes in social policies that are hostile to the well-being of socially stigmatized populations, including low SES whites; and 2) changes in racial hostility and animus that are embedded in our culture.