Social scientists commonly assert that race is a cultural construct, not biology. This refrain may be correct in spirit, but recent debate over racial inequalities in health has exposed cracks in the constructionist critique. One fundamental problem is that researchers often invoke the constructionist view only to reject racial-genetic determinism, rather than to stimulate research. Unfortunately, this approach does not address the empirical claims of racial-genetic explanations, and it deflects attention from the biological consequences of cultural constructs like race. In this talk, I present an approach designed to disentangle cultural and biological dimensions of the race concept and to test competing hypotheses for the pattern of excess hypertension, or chronic high blood pressure, in people of African descent. By integrating methods from the social and biological sciences, I show that common assumptions about the racial-genetic basis for excess hypertension in the African Diaspora are false. This argument has broader implications for the integration of social and biological sciences in anthropology and neighboring disciplines.
Clarence C. Gravlee is associate professor in the Department of Anthropology at University of Florida. The central goal of his research is to identify and address the social and cultural causes of racial inequities in health. His work is grounded in a biocultural approach to health and human development, drawing on methods from the social and biological sciences. His current primary project focuses on the health effects of racism among African Americans in Tallahassee, FL. Using a community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach, the project integrates conventional ethnographic methods, formal social network analysis, and epidemiologic methods. For more information, see www.gravlee.org
Přednáška se uskuteční 5.5.2014 od 13:00 v SP319 (Sedláčkova 15)
Přednáška je výstupem projektu NOTES - Nové technologie ve vědách (o současných i minulých) společnostech, Projekt OP VK, reg. číslo CZ.1.07/2.3.00/20.0135, tento projekt je spolufinancován Evropským sociálním fondem a státním rozpočtem České republiky