Arleen TuchmanOct 7, 2020
A History of Race and Disease
Yale University Press 2020
In her new book Diabetes: A History of Race and Disease (Yale University Press, 2020), Arleen Tuchman, professor of history at Vanderbilt University, describes the history of how the perception of diabetes has evolved over the past two centuries. She charts the chronology of diabetes, from its beginnings as a disease associated with Jews to one associated with “non-whites.” She explores the connotations that patients, advocates, physicians, and policymakers have attached to diabetes (e.g., disease of the “civilized” versus disease of the “primitive”) and how researchers have consistently missed socioeconomic factors that may represent the most important risk factor for the disease.
Alec Kacew is a medical school student at the University of Chicago.