AAS 21 Podcast

COVID-19 in Black America

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Episode notes

In our inaugural new episode, Ebun and Mae take a deep dive into questions about the impact of COVID-19 on communities of color. From cultural responses to lockdown and the need for a government response to creating a more just and inclusive public health system, our host break down multiple dimensions of the pandemic and point toward some resources to learn more.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “COVID-19 Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities”

  • Holmes L, Enwere M, Williams J, et al. “Black-White Risk Differentials in COVID-19 (SARS-COV2) Transmission, Mortality and Case Fatality in the United States: Translational Epidemiologic Perspective and Challenges.” Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020;17(2):4322. DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17124322 
The Culture of __

“Cardi B Coronavirus Remix (Clean)”

Dax, “Coronavirus (State of Emergency)”

The Breakdown - Guest Info

(Photo credit: IAPHS.org)

Prof. Sharelle Barber (https://drexel.edu/dornsife/academics/faculty/Sharrelle-Barber/)

Dr. Sharrelle Barber is a social epidemiologist whose research focuses on the intersection of "place, race, and health." Through empirical evidence, her work seeks to document how racism becomes "embodied" through the neighborhood context and how this fundamental structural determinant of racial health inequities can be leveraged for transformative change through anti-racist policy initiatives. Dr. Barber’s research is framed through a structural racism lens, grounded in interdisciplinary theories (e.g. Ecosocial Theory and Critical Race Theory) and employs various advanced methodological techniques including multilevel modeling and longitudinal data analyses. Her articles and commentary appear in leading publications, including the Lancet Infectious Disease, the American Journal of Public Health, Social Science and Medicine, and The Nation. A member of the Health Justice Advisory Committee for the Poor People’s Campaign, Dr. Barber is committed to using her scholarship to make the invisible visible, mobilize data for action, and contribute to the transnational dialogue around racism and health inequities.

(Photo credit: Sameer Khan/Fotobuddy)

Prof. Keith Wailoo (http://www.keithwailoo.com/)

Keith Andrew Wailoo is Henry Putnam University Professor of History and Public Affairs at Princeton University where he teaches in the Department of History and the School of Public and International Affairs. The current President of the American Association for the History of Medicine (2020-22), he is an award-winning author on drugs and drug policy; race, science, and health; genetics and society; and history of medicine, disease, health policy and medical affairs in the United States. Wailoo is currently working on several book-length projects: a history of addiction in the United States.; a history of how pandemics past and present transformed life in the United States; and Poisoning Master — a story of enslavement, drugs, the law, and racial hierarchy, set in 1850s Tennessee on the cusp of the Civil War and focusing on the trial of an enslaved girl, a nurse accused of murder. Wailoo  joins Dr. Anthony Fauci and others as a recipient of the 2021 Dan David Prize, an award endowed by the Dan David Foundation and headquartered at Tel Aviv University. 

See, Hear, Do

Library Company of Philadelphia - Deja Vu, We’ve Been Here Before: Race, Health, and Epidemics

Theo Rogers, Milwaukee in Pain

Antoine S. Johnson, Elise A. Mitchell, and Ayah Nuriddin, “Syllabus: A History of Anti-Black Racism in Medicine,” Black Perspectives (blog)

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, “Black America has a Reason to Question Authorities”