Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present Reprint Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 757 ratings
ISBN-13: 978-0767915472
ISBN-10: 076791547X
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  • Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present
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Editorial Reviews

Review

National Book Critics Circle Award Winner (Nonfiction)
PEN/Oakland Award Winner
BCALA Nonfiction Award Winner
Gustavus Meyers Award Winner


“This groundbreaking study documents that the infamous Tuskegee experiment, in which black syphilitic men were studied but not treated, was simply the most publicized in a long, and continuing, history of the American medical establishment using African Americans as unwitting or unwilling human guinea pigs . . . Washington is a great storyteller, and in addition to giving us an abundance of information on ‘scientific racism,’ the book, even at its most disturbing, is compulsively readable. It covers a wide range of topics—the history of hospitals not charging black patients so that, after death, their bodies could be used for anatomy classes; the exhaustive research done on black prisoners throughout the 20th century—and paints a powerful and disturbing portrait of medicine, race, sex, and the abuse of power.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Medical ethicist and journalist Washington details the abusive medical practices to which African Americans have been subjected.
“She begins her shocking history in the colonial period, when owners would hire out or sell slaves to physicians for use as guinea pigs in medical experiments. Into the 19th century, black cadavers were routinely exploited for profit by whites who shipped them to medical schools for dissection and to museums and traveling shows for casual public display. The most notorious case here may be the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, in which about 600 syphilitic men were left untreated by the U.S. Public Health Service so it could study the progression of the disease, but Washington asserts that it was the forerunner to a host of similar medical abuses . . . African American skepticism about the medical establishment and reluctance to participate in medical research is an unfortunate result. One of her goals in writing this book, aside from documenting a shameful past, is to convince them that they must participate actively in therapeutic medical research, especially in areas that most affect their community’s health, while remaining ever alert to possible abuses.
“Sweeping and powerful.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

About the Author

HARRIET A. WASHINGTON has been a fellow in ethics at the Harvard Medical School, a fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health, and a senior research scholar at the National Center for Bioethics at Tuskegee University. As a journalist and editor, she has worked for USA Today and several other publications, been a Knight Fellow at Stanford University and has written for such academic forums as the Harvard Public Health Review and The New England Journal of Medicine. She is the recipient of several prestigious awards for her work. Washington lives in New York City.

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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5
757 customer ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on April 19, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on September 19, 2016
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Top international reviews

gerry
5.0 out of 5 stars Medical Apartheid: The Dark History Of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times To The Present
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 16, 2013
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Elle
5.0 out of 5 stars A book necessary for all who deny that racism exists.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 21, 2016
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic fantastic fantastic spot on and so true in all ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 24, 2017
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mike
5.0 out of 5 stars Seeing the light.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 20, 2015
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Mr. R. Dennis
5.0 out of 5 stars Important read to understand the past. Socrates once said ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 16, 2017
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Gillian Jordan
3.0 out of 5 stars Informative
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 23, 2018
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Mr ashley
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 14, 2018
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Paul El
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 7, 2018
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 18, 2011
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andrea
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 12, 2018
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steve
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 29, 2018
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farooqi muskwati
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 8, 2016
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Miss N Watson
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 14, 2017
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dean howard
5.0 out of 5 stars good
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 6, 2017
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s.ofori
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating book.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 25, 2015
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