When it comes to psychiatry and brain science, moms haven’t had it easy. Autism once was blamed on “refrigerator mothers.” Obsessive-compulsive disorder used to be blamed on mothers who got toilet training wrong. Even homosexuality, back when psychiatry considered it to be a sickness, was said to be caused by… guess who? Ever since Freud, it’s been hard to find any emotional or mental disorder that, in one way or another, therapists haven’t tried to plant right at the feet of your mom.
They were wrong, of course. But it took until a raft of population studies in the late…
In 1922, the Commissioner of Health for Chicago had a scale installed in the lobby of City Hall. Any and all passersby were invited to come in, step on, and find out what they weighed. City residents soon flocked to the building and lined up all day long to check their weight. The scale was the hottest ticket in town.
Thirty years earlier, most Americans had no idea what they weighed — nor did their physicians. Doctors and hospitals had had scales since the 1870s; they just weren’t a part of standard health evaluations. Certainly, there were sociocultural attitudes and…
Racism is deadly.
This is apparent when police kill unarmed people of color such as George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. But the lethality of systemic racism is also evident in the Covid-19 pandemic, which is killing African Americans at a staggering three times the rate of white people.
Nancy Krieger has been shining a light on the health impacts of racism and inequality since she was in college. I first met Krieger when she was a teaching assistant in a groundbreaking college class I took that explored the interplay between sexism, racism, and science. The class, taught by Harvard biologist…
One in eight couples struggle to conceive, and in about half of these cases, male infertility is the cause. So why do some men drag their feet when it comes to getting tested?
“It’s the big question,” says Dr. Daniel B. Shapiro, medical director at Reproductive Biology Associates, an in-vitro fertilization clinic in Georgia. “The idea that the male has anything to do with fertility was previously rejected for narrow and selfish reasons — namely, sexism.”
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