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I’M COMING UP ON THE ROUGH SIDE OF THE MOUNTAIN: RACISM, RACIAL IDENTITY, SOCIAL JUSTICE AND THE HYPOTHESIS OF DIMINISHING RETURNS IN HEALTH DISPARITY

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abstract
Applying the social justice theory of Powers and Faden, I consider the negative consequences of racism on levels of well-being and its essential elements and deliberate whether racism-induced insufficiencies contribute to cumulative disadvantage that, for Blacks, undermines the magnitude of health gains associated with increasing educational attainment. Referred to as the diminishing return hypothesis, evidence has suggested that increasing levels of educational attainment for minorities do not incur similar health returns as those noted in Whites. Using Powers and Faden’s concept of well-being, I speculate how racism may diminish not only levels of health but also personal security, reasoning, respect, attachment, and self-determination that form the bases for cumulative disadvantage. Although there is evidence linking racism to poor health outcomes, to date, the effects of racism on the remaining five essential dimensions of well-being have not been discussed. If racism mitigates the ‘capability and the freedom’ of Blacks to attain sufficient levels of well-being and its essential elements, the result is a pattern of insufficiencies that provide a foundation of disadvantages that undermines the potential health gains of increasing educational attainment.
subject
diminishing return hypothesis
health disparity
race
social justice theory
contributor
Suarez, Edward Carlos (author)
Iltis, Ana (committee chair)
King, Nancy M (committee member)
Bell, Ronny A (committee member)
date
2016-01-11T09:35:20Z (accessioned)
2016-01-11T09:35:20Z (available)
2015 (issued)
degree
Bioethics (discipline)
identifier
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/57426 (uri)
language
en (iso)
publisher
Wake Forest University
title
I’M COMING UP ON THE ROUGH SIDE OF THE MOUNTAIN: RACISM, RACIAL IDENTITY, SOCIAL JUSTICE AND THE HYPOTHESIS OF DIMINISHING RETURNS IN HEALTH DISPARITY
type
Thesis

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