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Kathryn M. Nowotny

This review integrates and builds linkages among existing theoretical and empirical literature from across disciplines to further broaden our understanding of the…

Abstract

This review integrates and builds linkages among existing theoretical and empirical literature from across disciplines to further broaden our understanding of the relationship between inequality, imprisonment, and health for black men. The review examines the health impact of prisons through an ecological theoretical perspective to understand how factors at multiple levels of the social ecology interact with prisons to potentially contribute to deleterious health effects and the exacerbation of race/ethnic health disparities.

This review finds that there are documented health disparities between inmates and non-inmates, but the casual mechanisms explaining this relationship are not well-understood. Prisons may interact with other societal systems – such as the family (microsystem), education, and healthcare systems (meso/exosystems), and systems of racial oppression (macrosystem) – to influence individual and population health.

The review also finds that research needs to move the discussion of the race effects in health and crime/justice disparities beyond the mere documentation of such differences toward a better understanding of their causes and effects at the level of individuals, communities, and other social ecologies.

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Inequality, Crime, and Health Among African American Males
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-051-0

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Latrica Best and W. Carson Byrd

Our primary aim is to discuss the variability that exists in the operationalization of race/ethnicity in research on genetic and biological markers. We employ Stuart…

Abstract

Purpose

Our primary aim is to discuss the variability that exists in the operationalization of race/ethnicity in research on genetic and biological markers. We employ Stuart Hall’s “floating signifiers” of race approach to explain the ambiguous manner in which researchers discuss the links between race and genetics.

Methodology/approach

We examine articles that use race/ethnicity and genetic or biological markers between 2000 and 2013 within three prominent genetic journals. We focused on original, empirical articles only. We utilize various race/ethnic-related search terms to obtain our sample and to categorize how terms were used.

Findings

A total of 336 articles fit our search criteria. The number of articles mentioning race/ethnicity and genetic or biological information increased over the time. A significant percentage of publications base their research on whites only. When discussions of race are included in studies, scientists often use multiple categories of race/ethnicity without much explanation.

Research limitations/implications

We omit non-research articles and commentary for each journal, which could contain important discussions regarding race and genetics. This work highlights how race/ethnicity can vary in application and interpretation.

Originality/value

Our discussion of race/ethnicity as “floating signifiers” adds a layer of complexity to the longstanding debate regarding the importance of race/ethnicity in genetic research. The “floating” nature of race/ethnicity underlines how subjective the characterizations of samples are and how possible interpretations of results for groups can impact health disparities research. Given the increased use of genetic data by social scientists, there is a need for more cross-disciplinary discussions on the race–gene relationship.

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Genetics, Health and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-581-4

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Kammi K. Schmeer

Past research on the immigrant health paradox suggests that children with immigrant parents may have a health advantage over those with US-born parents, especially if the…

Abstract

Past research on the immigrant health paradox suggests that children with immigrant parents may have a health advantage over those with US-born parents, especially if the parent is a recent immigrant. Other research emphasizes the social and economic challenges children with immigrant parents face, in part due to disadvantaged social class and racial/ethnic positions. Underlying physiological changes due to chronic stress exposures among children in immigrant families is one potential health disadvantage that may not yet be apparent in traditional health measures. To explore these biological disparities during childhood, I use national biomarker and survey data from the National Health and Nutrition Survey (NHANES) (N = 11,866) to evaluate parent nativity and educational status associations with low-grade inflammation, indicated by C-reactive protein (CRP), in children ages 2–15 years. I find that children with an immigrant parent, and particularly a low-educated immigrant parent, have higher CRP, net of birth, body mass index (BMI) and other factors, than children with a US-born parent with either a low or higher education. Comparing children with low-educated parents, those with a foreign-born parent have higher predicted CRP. The findings from this study provide new evidence that children living in immigrant families in the US may be facing higher levels of chronic stress exposure, as indicated by the increased risk of low-grade inflammation, than those with US-born parents. The physiological changes related to increased risk of inflammation, could set children in immigrant families on pathways toward mental and physical health problems later in the life course.

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Immigration and Health
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-062-4

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Arpita Chattopadhyay

This study examines the variation in preventable hospitalization rates of Medicaid children in California to extend our understanding of racial and ethnic disparity in…

Abstract

This study examines the variation in preventable hospitalization rates of Medicaid children in California to extend our understanding of racial and ethnic disparity in primary care quality. The results show that primary care quality varies substantially by race and ethnicity even when financial access is ensured by Medicaid. Moreover, the domain of primary care that minority children experience disadvantage varies by race and ethnicity. Compared to white children, African-American children lack continuity and comprehensiveness of care that is necessary for the management of chronic conditions. Hispanic children, on the contrary, have inadequate first contact care. Asian children experience a better quality of care overall than white children. Independent of race, a primary language other than English has a protective effect on preventable hospitalization rates, indicating that language need not be a barrier to quality primary care for racial and ethnic minority groups. The possible reasons underlying the observed differences in health outcome by race/ethnicity and primary language are discussed.

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Social Sources of Disparities in Health and Health Care and Linkages to Policy, Population Concerns and Providers of Care
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-835-9

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Lynn Weber and Deborah Parra-Medina

Scholars and activists working both within and outside the massive health-related machinery of government and the private sector and within and outside communities of…

Abstract

Scholars and activists working both within and outside the massive health-related machinery of government and the private sector and within and outside communities of color address the same fundamental questions: Why do health disparities exist? Why have they persisted over such a long time? What can be done to significantly reduce or eliminate them?

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Gender Perspectives on Health and Medicine
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-239-9

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Immigration and Health
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-062-4

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Portia E. Adams

Purpose – To examine and critique the research on HIV/AIDS health disparities among Black Americans.Methodology – A selective investigation of quantitative research on…

Abstract

Purpose – To examine and critique the research on HIV/AIDS health disparities among Black Americans.

Methodology – A selective investigation of quantitative research on HIV/AIDS health disparities from the 1980s to the present. Prevalence and incidence of HIV/AIDS in Black American communities and research targeting individual-level behaviors and their outcomes are presented. The impact of racialized discourses related to Black sexuality and its impact on research are discussed. Future policy and practice directions are offered.

Findings – This chapter notes the preponderance of studies at the individual level even in the face of null findings.

Research limitations/implications – This work is not an exhaustive examination of all the studies on HIV racial health disparity.

Practical implications – This chapter contributes to the literature that redirects HIV/AIDS research from focus on individual behaviors in the face of a population-level epidemic.

Social implications – This chapter demonstrates how research goals may be diverted by unacknowledged racialized assumptions.

Originality/value of chapter – This study is one of the few critiques of HIV/AIDS research on Black Americans.

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Health Disparities Among Under-served Populations: Implications for Research, Policy and Praxis
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-103-8

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Michal Engelman and Leafia Zi Ye

Social and economic disparities between racial/ethnic groups are a feature of the American context into which immigrants are incorporated and a key determinant of…

Abstract

Social and economic disparities between racial/ethnic groups are a feature of the American context into which immigrants are incorporated and a key determinant of population health. We ask whether racial/ethnic disparities in diabetes vary by nativity and whether native-immigrant disparities in diabetes vary by race and over time in the United States. Using the 2000–2015 National Health Interview Survey, we estimate logistic regressions to examine the interaction of race/ethnicity, nativity, and duration in the US in shaping diabetes patterns. Relative to their native-born co-ethnics, foreign-born Asian adults experience a significant diabetes disadvantage, while foreign-born Hispanic, Black, and White adults experience a significant advantage. Adjusting for obesity, education, and other covariates eliminates the foreign-born advantage for Black and White adults, but it persists for Hispanic adults. The same adjustment accentuates the disadvantage for foreign-born Asian adults. For Black and Hispanic adults, the protective foreign-born effect erodes as duration in the US increases. For foreign-born Asian adults, the immigrant disadvantage appears to grow with duration in the US. Relative to native-born White adults, all non-white groups regardless of nativity see a diabetes disadvantage because the racial/ethnic disadvantage either countervails a foreign-born advantage or amplifies a foreign-born disadvantage. Racial/ethnic differentials in diabetes are considerable and are influenced by each group’s nativity composition. Obesity and (for the foreign-born) time in the US influence these disparities, but do not explain them. These findings underscore the importance of unmeasured, systemic determinants of health in America’s race-conscious society.

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Immigration and Health
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-062-4

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Brian J. Smith

This chapter harnesses Western conceptions of justice, traditional justifications of social control, and existing social inequalities to frame and fully understand the…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter harnesses Western conceptions of justice, traditional justifications of social control, and existing social inequalities to frame and fully understand the racial and ethnic disparities which constitute the U.S. juvenile justice system.

Methodology/approach

Juvenile justice system disparities are framed within the theoretical contexts of Western conceptions of justice, traditional justifications of social control, and social inequality. The chapter’s perspective is based on these concepts of justice, social control justifications, and evidence from scholarly research on juvenile justice system disparities.

Findings

Overall, the U.S. juvenile justice system’s racial and ethnic disparities violate fundamental concepts of justice, traditional justifications of social control, and exacerbate existing social inequalities.

Originality/value

Through its utilization of Western conceptions of justice and social control justifications, this chapter offers a relatively unique framework for the examination of the U.S. juvenile justice system’s racial and ethnic disparities. While recognizing the overall quality and significance of disparities research, the chapter asks the reader to take a step back, and look at and think about the broader justice and inequality contexts.

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Race, Ethnicity and Law
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-604-4

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Louis Tay, Vincent Ng, Lauren Kuykendall and Ed Diener

The relationship between demographic factors and worker well-being has garnered increased attention, but empirical studies have shown to inconsistent results. This chapter…

Abstract

The relationship between demographic factors and worker well-being has garnered increased attention, but empirical studies have shown to inconsistent results. This chapter addresses this issue by examining how age, gender, and race/ethnicity relate to worker well-being using large, representative samples. Data from the Gallup Healthways Index and Gallup World Poll provided information on both job and life satisfaction outcomes for full-time workers in the United States and 156 countries, respectively. In general, results indicated that increasing age was associated with more workers reporting job satisfaction and fewer people reporting stress and negative affect. Women were comparable to men in reported job satisfaction and well-being, but more women reported experiencing negative affect and stress. Less consistent well-being differences in ethnic/racial groups were found. Finally, we found strong evidence for direct and indirect national demographic effects on worker well-being showing need for considering workforce demography in future theory building. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

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The Role of Demographics in Occupational Stress and Well Being
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-646-0

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