Race Medicine: Treating Health Inequities from Slavery to Genomics

Lecture Annual David Hume Lecture on Human Nature

Dorothy Roberts

Dorothy Roberts, J.D.,

Professor at the University of Pennsylvania

Dorothy Roberts, J.D., will trace the U.S. history of race medicine—the practice of treating disease according to race.

As Dr. Roberts will explain, race medicine has functioned to make health inequities and other forms of racial inequality seem natural and inevitable. This practice is no less troubling in today’s genomic age than at the time of its origins in slavery.

Roberts, an acclaimed scholar of race, gender and the law, is the 14th Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor at the University of Pennsylvania with a joint appointment in the Department of Sociology and the Law School where she also holds the inaugural Raymond Pace and Sadie Tanner Mosell Alexander chair.

Her path-breaking work in law and public policy focuses on urgent contemporary issues in health, social justice and bioethics, especially as they impact the lives of women, children and African-Americans. Her major books include Fatal Invention: How Science, Politics, and Big Business Re-create Race in the Twenty-first Century (New Press, 2011); Shattered Bonds: The Color of Child Welfare (Basic Books, 2002), and Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty (Pantheon, 1997).


The Human Nature Project


David Livingstone Smith


(207) 602-2237

5:30 PM
Alfond Center for Health Sciences, Room 205

Biddeford Campus

Free and open to the public