Epidemic Illusions: On The Coloniality Of Global Public Health


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  • Epidemic Illusions: On the Coloniality of Global Public Health
    • Catalogues how what we think of as value-neutral, objective science actually commits symbolic violence.
  • The modern aid complex is built on the idea that descendants of settler colonialists are morally related to people in the global south as potential helpers and saviours.  But when you see that we are really beneficiaries and supporters of a global institutional order that systematizes their oppression, then the intervention actually changes from a failed aid development model to one of a reparative justice model.
  • Symbolic Violence or Epistemic Injustice
    • The capacity to impose the means for comprehending and adapting to the social world by representing the economic and political world in disguised, taken-for-granted forms.
    • Words do symbolic violence (e.g., outbreak, superspreader).  We need to really interrogate the categories that we use as part of our impact evaluations to see what kinds of ideological work that they are doing.
  • Reparative Justice
    • Reparations for American descendants of persons enslaved in the US and their potential impact on COVID-19 transmission – shows how eradication of the wealth gap between black and white Americans could have decreased COVID-19 by 30-90%