Get Another Dimension to the Black Diaspora: Diet, Disease and PDF

By Kenneth F. Kiple

ISBN-10: 0521236649

ISBN-13: 9780521236645

This is often an engrossing research of black sickness immunities and susceptibilities and their influence on either slavery and racism. Its pages interweave the dietary, organic, and clinical sciences with demography. The booklet starts with an exam of the pre-slavery period in Africa after which pursues its topic into the slave societies of the West Indies and the USA. This really interdisciplinary process allows the mixing of 2 special options of racial modifications, that of the difficult sciences in accordance with gene frequencies and that of the social sciences stressing environmental components. The authors examine black wellbeing and fitness and white clinical perform within the usa throughout the antebellum interval, and identify a hyperlink among black-related illnesses and white racism. a last part strains significant black disorder susceptibilities from the Civil struggle to the current, arguing that different dietary and clinical wishes of blacks are nonetheless principally unappreciated or overlooked.

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Extra info for Another Dimension to the Black Diaspora: Diet, Disease and Racism

Example text

Obviously, almost since birth natives had been in the process of acquiring immunity. But West Africans possessed more of a defense against P. falciparum than acquired immunity alone. Many of their defenses were innate. 66 Medical researchers, although cognizant of sickle cell anemia since 1910 (when the first clinical description of the disease appeared),67 have only recently begun to grasp its etiology. 70 Next it was discovered that so long as the possessor of this trait is heterozygous (inherits it from one parent only), he or she does not develop deadly sickle cell anemia.

Those who place it in the Americas rest much of their argument on the fact that the disease was first described and epidemics first recorded in the Western Hemisphere (Yucatan in Mexico, Cuba, and Barbados) in 1648, some 130 years before it was distinguished from malarial fevers and similarly described and recorded in West Africa. By contrast, those who prefer Africa as yellow fever's homeland rely on immunologic evidence that seems to point steadfastly at that continent. American Indians proved very susceptible to the yellow fever epidemics that struck the Western Hemisphere from the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries,13 yet black Africans were not.

That they were new diseases to Europeans against which they were relatively defenseless is well-illustrated by the way West Africans thrived in the midst of European death. An English physician marveled that despite "bilious fevers, of the most malignant kind . . "44 Then, with typical British understatement, he added that "the climate of Africa . . "45 The full extent of this prejudice is reflected by the markedly different disease experience of nineteenth-century black and white troops serving the British Crown in West Africa.

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Another Dimension to the Black Diaspora: Diet, Disease and Racism by Kenneth F. Kiple


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