Minority Health Archive

Why Genes Don't Count (for Racial Differences in Health)

Goodman, Alan H (2000) Why Genes Don't Count (for Racial Differences in Health). American Journal of Public Health, 90 (11). pp. 1699-1702. ISSN 0090-0036

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

There is a paradoxical relationship between "race" and genetics. Whereas genetic data were first used to prove the validity of race, since the early 1970s they have been used to illustrate the invalidity of biological races. Indeed, race does not account for human genetic variation, which is continuous, complexly structured, constantly changing, and predominantly within "races." Despite the disproof of race-as-biology, genetic variation continues to be used to explain racial differences. Such explanations require the acceptance of 2 disproved assumptions: that genetic variation explains variation in disease and that genetic variation explains racial variation in disease. While the former is a form of geneticization, the notion that genes are the primary determinants of biology and behavior, the latter represents a form of racialization, an exaggeration of the salience of race. Using race as a proxy for genetic differences limits understandings of the complex interactions among political-economic processes, lived experiences, and human biologies. By moving beyond studies of racialized genetics, we can clarify the processes by which varied and interwoven forms of racialization "under the skin."


Export/Citation:EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII (Chicago style) | HTML Citation | OpenURL | Reference Manager
Social Networking:

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This article is available at the publisher’s Web site. Access to the full text is subject to the publisher’s access restrictions.
Uncontrolled Keywords: race, genes, genetics
Subjects: Health > Health Equity > Bioethics
Practice
Health
Practice > service
Research > Genetics and Race
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Kismet Loftin-Bell
Date Deposited: 28 Mar 2006
Last Modified: 30 Jun 2011 11:21
Link to this item (URI): http://health-equity.lib.umd.edu/id/eprint/427

Actions (login required)

View Item