Why You Should Think Twice About Those DNA-By-Mail Results

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Health/Medicine/Genetics, History on 2017-07-07 20:36Z by Steven

Why You Should Think Twice About Those DNA-By-Mail Results

Cosmos & Culture: Commentary on Science and Society
National Public Radio
2017-07-06

Barbara J. King, Professor Emerita of Anthropology
College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Virginia


iStockphoto

In a new book, University of North Carolina, Charlotte anthropologist Jonathan Marks says that racism in science is alive and well.

This stands in sharp contrast to creationist thinking, Marks says, which is, like racism, decidedly evident in our society but most certainly not welcome in science.

In Is Science Racist? Marks writes:

“If you espouse creationist ideas in science, you are branded as an ideologue, as a close-minded pseudo-scientist who is unable to adopt a modern perspective, and who consequently has no place in the community of scholars. But if you espouse racist ideas in science, that’s not quite so bad. People might look at you a little askance, but as a racist you can coexist in science alongside them, which you couldn’t do if you were a creationist. Science is racist when it permits scientists who advance racist ideas to exist and to thrive institutionally.”

This is a strong set of claims, and Marks uses numerous examples to support them. For example, a 2014 book by science writer Nicholas Wade used genes and race to explain, as Michael Balter put it in Science magazine, “why some people live in tribal societies and some in advanced civilizations, why African-Americans are allegedly more violent than whites, and why the Chinese may be good at business.”…

Read the entire article here.

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Is science racist?

Posted in Anthropology, Books, Health/Medicine/Genetics, History, Media Archive, Monographs on 2017-07-07 18:18Z by Steven

Is science racist?

Polity
January 2017
140 pages
122 x 188 mm / 5 x 7 in
Hardback ISBN: 9780745689210
Paperback ISBN: 9780745689227
Open eBook ISBN: 9780745689258

Jonathan Marks, Professor of Anthropology
University of North Carolina, Charlotte

Every arena of science has its own flash-point issues – chemistry and poison gas, physics and the atom bomb – and genetics has had a troubled history with race. As Jonathan Marks reveals, this dangerous relationship rumbles on to this day, still leaving plenty of leeway for a belief in the basic natural inequality of races.

The eugenic science of the early twentieth century and the commodified genomic science of today are unified by the mistaken belief that human races are naturalistic categories. Yet their boundaries are founded neither in biology nor genetics and, not being a formal scientific concept, race is largely not accessible to the scientist. As Marks argues, race can only be grasped through the humanities: historically, experientially, politically.

This wise, witty essay explores the persistence and legacy of scientific racism, which misappropriates the authority of science and undermines it by converting it into a social weapon.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. How science invented race
  3. Science, race, and genomics
  4. Racism and biomedical science
  5. What we know, and why it matters
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Race and Ethnicity: Constancy in Change (First Edition)

Posted in Anthologies, Anthropology, Asian Diaspora, Books, Economics, Health/Medicine/Genetics, History, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Native Americans/First Nation, Politics/Public Policy, Social Justice, Social Science, United States on 2017-07-05 13:37Z by Steven

Race and Ethnicity: Constancy in Change (First Edition)

Cognella Academic Publishing
2017
372 pages
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-63487-489-2

Edited by:

Milton Vickerman, Associate Professor of Sociology
University of Virginia

Hephzibah V. Strmic-Pawl, Assistant Professor of Sociology
Manhattanville College, Purchase, New York

Race and Ethnicity: Constancy in Change uses both classic readings and new research on contemporary racial inequality to create a logical progression through the primary issues of race and ethnicity.

The nine sections discuss the history of race and racism, define major concepts, and analyze how and why inequality persists. In addition to the readings, the anthology features introductions that frame each section’s readings, key terms with which students should be familiar, learning objectives for each section, and Reflect and Consider inquiries designed for each reading. Each section ends with a Highlight that showcases a contemporary racial trend in the news. The sections are also supplemented by Read, Listen, Watch, Interact! features, which supply easily accessible links to complementary readings, audio stories, videos, and interactive websites. The book concludes with Investigate Further, a list of readings for those who wish to delve deeper into a particular topic.

Race and Ethnicity enables students to grasp the fundamentals of race and racism and encourages them to engage in conversations about them. Ideal for sociology programs, the anthology is well-suited to courses on race and ethnicity.

Table of Contents

  • RACE & ETHNICITY: WHY IT MATTERS / MILTON VICKERMAN AND HEPHZIBAH V. STRMIC-PAWL
  • KEY TERMS
  • PART 1 THE FOUNDATIONS OF RACE
    • READING 1.1 Race BY PETER WADE
    • READING 1.2 AAA Statement on Race BY AMERICAN ANTHROPOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION
    • HIGHLIGHT: Eugenics are Alive and Well in the United States BY PAUL CAMPOS, TIME
  • PART 2 THE SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF RACE
    • READING 2.1 Immigrants and the Changing Categories of Race BY KENNETH PREWITT
    • READING 2.2 The Theory of Racial Formation BY MICHAEL OMI AND HOWARD WINANT
    • HIGHLIGHT: Why Do So Many Americans Think They Have Cherokee Blood: The History of a Myth BY GREGORY D. SMITHERS, SLATE
  • PART 3 STRUCTURING AMERICAN IDENTITY THROUGH IMMIGRATION
    • READING 3.1 The United States: A Nation of Immigrants BY PETER KIVISTO
    • READING 3.2 The Three Phases of US Bound Immigration BY ALEJANDRO PORTES AND RUBEN RUMBAUT
    • READING 3.3 The Ideological Roots of the “Illegal” as Threat and the Boundary as Protector BY JOSEPH NEVINS
    • READING 3.4 Segmented Assimilation Revisited: Types of Acculturation and Socioeconomic Mobility in Young Adulthood BY MARY C. WATERS, VAN C. TRAN, PHILIP KASINITZ, AND JOHN H. MOLLENKOPF
    • READING 3.5 Immigration Patterns, Characteristics, and Identities BY ANNY BAKALIAN & MEHDI BOZORGMEHR
    • READING 3.6 The Reality of Asian American Oppression BY ROSALIND CHOU AND JOE FEAGIN
    • HIGHLIGHT: Future Immigration Will Change the Face of America by 2065 BY D’VERY COHN, PEW RESEARCH CENTER
  • PART 4 RACISM: THEORIES FOR UNDERSTANDING
    • READING 4.1 The Nature of Prejudice BY PETER ROSE
    • READING 4.2 Racism without Racists: “Killing Me Softly” with Color Blindness BY EDUARDO BONILLA-SILVA AND DAVID G. EMBRICK
    • READING 4.3 Colorstruck BY MARGARET HUNTER
    • READING 4.4 The White Supremacy Flower: A Model for Understanding Racism BY HEPHZIBAH V. STRMIC-PAWL
    • READING 4.5 Family Law, Feminist Legal Theory, and the Problem of Racial Hierarchy BY TWILA L. PERRY
    • HIGHLIGHT: Yes, All White People Are Racists— Now Let’s Do Something About It BY TIM DONOVAN, ALTERNET
  • PART 5 STRUCTURED RACIAL INEQUALITY
    • READING 5.1 The American Dream of Meritocracy BY HEATHER BETH JOHNSON
    • READING 5.2 Racial Orders in American Political Development BY DESMOND S. KING AND ROGERS M. SMITH
    • READING 5.3 Migration and Residential Segregation BY JOHN ICELAND
    • READING 5.4 “White, Young, Middle Class”: Aesthetic Labor, Race and Class in the Youth Labor Force BY YASEMIN BESEN-CASSINO
    • READING 5.5 Why Both Social Structure and Culture Matter in a Holistic Analysis of Inner-City Poverty BY WILLIAM JULIUS WILSON
    • HIGHLIGHT: Nine Charts About Wealth Inequality in America BY THE URBAN INSTITUTE
  • PART 6 RACISM IN POPULAR CULTURE
    • READING 6.1 The Revolution Will Not Be Available on iTunes: Racial Perspectives BY DUSTIN KIDD
    • READING 6.2 Racial Exclusion in the Online World BY REBECCA J. WEST AND BHOOMI THAKORE
    • READING 6.3 Fear Of A Black Athlete: Masculinity, Politics and The Body BY BEN CARRINGTON
    • READING 6.4 The Native American Experience: Racism and Mascots in Professional Sports BY KRYSTAL BEAMON
    • HIGHLIGHT: Pop Culture’s Black Lives Matter Moment Couldn’t Come at a Better Time BY STEVEN W. THRASHER, THE GUARDIAN
  • PART 7 CONTEMPORARY SYSTEMS OF OPPRESSION
    • READING 7.1 The State of Our Education BY TERENCE FITZGERALD
    • READING 7.2 The Immigration Industrial Complex BY TANYA GOLASH-BOZA
    • READING 7.3 Evading Responsibility for Green Harm: State Corporate Exploitation of Race, Class, and Gender Inequality BY EMILY GAARDER
    • HIGHLIGHT: 5 Links Between Higher Education and the Prison Industry BY HANNAH K. GOLD, ROLLING STONE
  • PART 8 THE FUTURE OF RACE
    • READING 8.1 Liminality in the Multiracial Experience: Towards a Concept of Identity Matrix BY DAVID L. BRUNSMA, DANIEL J. DELGADO, AND KERRY ANN ROCKQUEMORE
    • READING 8.2 Race and the New Bio-Citizen BY DOROTHY ROBERTS
    • READING 8.3 A Post-Racial Society? BY KATHLEEN FITZGERALD
    • HIGHLIGHT: Choose Your Own Identity BY BONNIE TSUI, THE NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE
  • PART 9 FIGHTING RACIAL INEQUALITY
    • READING 9.1 The Problem of The Twentieth Century is The Problem of The Color Line BY W.E.B. DU BOIS
    • READING 9.2 The Optimism of Uncertainty BY HOWARD ZINN
    • READING 9.3 Why We Still Need Affirmative Action BY ORLANDO PATTERSON
    • HIGHLIGHT: The Case for Reparations BY TA-NEHISI COATES, THE ATLANTIC
  • INVESTIGATE FURTHER
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Episode 38: Skulls and Skin (Seeing White, Part 8)

Posted in Audio, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Interviews on 2017-06-11 22:01Z by Steven

Episode 38: Skulls and Skin (Seeing White, Part 8)

Scene on Radio
2017-05-17

John Biewen, Host and Audio Program Director/Instructor
Center for Documentary Studies
Duke University, Durham, North Carolina


Skulls in the Samuel Morton Collection, University of Pennsylvania Museum. Photo by John Biewen

Scientists weren’t the first to divide humanity along racial – and racist – lines. But for hundreds of years, racial scientists claimed to provide proof for those racist hierarchies – and some still do.

Resources for this episode:

Listen to the podcast (00:45:56) here. Download the podcast here.

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The Future Is Mixed Race

Posted in Audio, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Interviews, Media Archive on 2017-05-17 01:41Z by Steven

The Future Is Mixed Race

Inside Higher Ed
Academic Minute
2017-05-16

Lynn Pasquerella, Host and President
Association of American Colleges & Universities

Today on the Academic Minute, Scott Solomon, professor of biosciences at Rice University, delves into gene flow and how globalization and mixed-race children could hold a key to our future.

Are human beings a finished product? In today’s Academic Minute, Rice University’s Scott Solomon delves into gene flow and how globalization and mixed-race children could hold a key to our future. Solomon is a professor of biosciences at Rice. A transcript of this podcast can be found here.

Download the episode (00:02:29) here.

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Degrees of Mixture, Degrees of Freedom: Genomics, Multiculturalism, and Race in Latin America

Posted in Anthropology, Books, Brazil, Caribbean/Latin America, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Mexico, Monographs, Social Science on 2017-05-03 02:22Z by Steven

Degrees of Mixture, Degrees of Freedom: Genomics, Multiculturalism, and Race in Latin America

Duke University Press
2017-05-05
328 pages
Cloth ISBN: 978-0-8223-6358-3
Paperback ISBN: 978-0-8223-6373-6
12 illustrations

Peter Wade, Professor of Social Anthropology
University of Manchester

Race mixture, or mestizaje, has played a critical role in the history, culture, and politics of Latin America. In Degrees of Mixture, Degrees of Freedom, Peter Wade draws on a multidisciplinary research study in Mexico, Brazil, and Colombia. He shows how Latin American elites and outside observers have emphasized mixture’s democratizing potential, depicting it as a useful resource for addressing problems of racism (claiming that race mixture undoes racial difference and hierarchy), while Latin American scientists participate in this narrative with claims that genetic studies of mestizos can help isolate genetic contributors to diabetes and obesity and improve health for all. Wade argues that, in the process, genomics produces biologized versions of racialized difference within the nation and the region, but a comparative approach nuances the simple idea that highly racialized societies give rise to highly racialized genomics. Wade examines the tensions between mixture and purity, and between equality and hierarchy in liberal political orders, exploring how ideas and scientific data about genetic mixture are produced and circulate through complex networks.

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DNA Tests, and Sometimes Surprising Results

Posted in Articles, Communications/Media Studies, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2017-04-23 20:21Z by Steven

DNA Tests, and Sometimes Surprising Results

The New York Times
2017-04-20

Anita Foeman, Professor of Communication Studies
West Chester University, West Chester, Pennsylvania


Students at West Chester University in Pennsylvania have volunteered to take part in ancestry DNA testing. Anita Foeman, a communications professor, says she has found that conversations around race are “complicated and jagged.”
Credit West Chester University

Race and identity in many ways define who we think we are, while modern genetics can challenge those notions. To delve into these issues, I am involved with a communications studies project at West Chester University in Pennsylvania that explores narratives at the intersection of race and identity.

For the last decade, I have invited hundreds of people to be part of ancestry DNA tests. But first I ask people how they identify themselves racially. It has been very interesting to explore their feelings about the differences between how they define themselves and what their DNA makeup shows when the test results come in.

Biologically, our ancestral differences reflect only a 0.1 percent difference in DNA. Yet we often cling to those differences — both in unity with our fellow people of origin and, at times, in divisiveness.

Over all, the experiment has provided a special opportunity to explore the lines of race. I found that as human beings, our strategies for survival are the same, and our similarities far outweigh our differences…

Bernard: Identifies as: Black; father is black and mother is white

Credit Erica C. Thompson/West Chester University

His prediction: 50% European, 50% African

His comments before the test: My mother said, “I know you are me, but no cop is going to take the time to find out your mother is white.” She was very specific about raising me as a black man.

Results: 91% European, 5% Middle Eastern, 2% Hispanic; less than 1% African and Asian

Thoughts about his ancestry results: What are you trying to do to me? You have caused a lot of problems in my family. I know my nose is sharp and my skin is light, but my politics are as black as night. Today, I don’t identify as mixed. I reject my white privilege in a racist America. There is no way that I or my kids will identify as anything other than black…

Read the entire article here.

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Native Affairs newsreader Oriini Kaipara identified as ‘full-blooded Maori’ via DNA test

Posted in Articles, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Oceania, Videos on 2017-04-12 20:54Z by Steven

Native Affairs newsreader Oriini Kaipara identified as ‘full-blooded Maori’ via DNA test

The New Zealand Herald
2017-04-11

A DNA test appears to have found a woman with 100 per cent Maori DNA.

An analysis of the DNA of Oriini Kaipara, 33, has shown that – despite her having both Maori and Pakeha ancestry – her genes only contain Maori DNA. That makes her, in her own words, a “full-blooded Maori”.

Culturally, people identify as Maori through their whakapapa, while legally a person is defined as Maori if they are of Maori descent, even through one long-distant ancestor.

However, the intermingling of different ethnicities in New Zealand over the past 200 years means all Maori people are thought to have some non-Maori ancestry, so would not be expected to have 100 per cent Maori DNA.

But Kaipara, 33, is different. The Native Affairs newsreader has some Pakeha ancestry, but it seems through a series of genetic flukes her parents passed on only the DNA from her Maori ancestors…

Read the entire article here.

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Black, White, Black and White: mixed race and health in Canada

Posted in Articles, Canada, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Social Science on 2017-04-12 00:00Z by Steven

Black, White, Black and White: mixed race and health in Canada

Ethnicity & Health
Published online: 2017-04-10
pages 1-12
DOI: 10.1080/13557858.2017.1315374

Gerry Veenstra, Professor of Sociology
University of British Columbia

  • Objectives: To document inequalities in hypertension, self-rated health, and self-rated mental health between Canadian adults who identify as Black, White, or Black and White and determine whether differences in educational attainment and household income explain them.
  • Design: The dataset was comprised of ten cycles (2001–2013) of the Canadian Community Health Survey. The health inequalities were examined by way of binary logistic regression modeling of hypertension and multinomial logistic regression modeling of self-rated health and self-rated mental health. Educational attainment and household income were investigated as potentially mediating factors using nested models and the Karlson-Holm-Breen decomposition technique.
  • Results: Black respondents were significantly more likely than White respondents to report hypertension, a disparity that was partly attributable to differences in income. White respondents reported the best and Black respondents reported the worst overall self-rated health, a disparity that was entirely attributable to income differences. Respondents who identified as both Black and White were significantly more likely than White respondents to report fair or poor mental health, a disparity that was partly attributable to income differences. After controlling for income, Black respondents were significantly less likely than White respondents to report fair or poor mental health. Educational attainment did not contribute to explaining any of these associations.
  • Conclusion: Canadians who identify as both Black and White fall between Black Canadians and White Canadians in regards to self-rated overall health, report the worst self-rated mental health of the three populations, and, with White Canadians, are the least likely to report hypertension. These heterogeneous findings are indicative of a range of diverse processes operative in the production of Black-White health inequalities in Canada.

Read or purchase the article here.

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The Myth of Human Races, Second Edition

Posted in Books, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Monographs on 2017-04-11 00:12Z by Steven

The Myth of Human Races, Second Edition

Wheatmark
2016-07-25
288 pages
Paperback ISBN: 978-1627874175

Alain F. Corcos, Professor Emeritus of Botany and Plant Pathology
Michigan State University

The idea that human races exist is a socially constructed myth that has no grounding in science. Regardless of skin, hair, or eye color, stature or physiognomy, we are all of one race. Nonetheless, scientists, social scientists, and pseudoscientists have, for three centuries, tried vainly to prove that distinctive and separate “races” of humanity exist. These protagonists of race theory have based their flawed research on one or more of five specious assumptions:

  • humanity can be classified into groups using identifiable physical characteristics
  • human characteristics are transmitted “through the blood”
  • distinct human physical characteristics are inherited together
  • physical features can be linked to human behavior
  • human groups or “races” are by their very nature unequal and, therefore, they can be ranked in order of intellectual, moral, and cultural superiority

The Myth of Human Races systematically dispels these fallacies and unravels the web of flawed research that has been woven to demonstrate the superiority of one group of people over another.

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