Yolonda Y. Wilson, “Racial Bias, Mortality, and the Pursuit of Justice” | National Humanities Center


Yolonda Y. Wilson, “Racial Bias, Mortality, and the Pursuit of Justice”

April 30, 2020

Research indicates that African Americans are far more likely to get sick than their fellow citizens who are white. Regardless of their age, educational attainment, or socioeconomic circumstances, they are more likely to suffer from severe forms of illness and have shorter life expectancies. While a number of factors play a part in this sad statistical reality, a key underlying factor is the persistence of racial bias in America.

In this podcast, philosopher Yolonda Y. Wilson from Howard University discusses her work on these issues, focusing particularly on how racial biases affect end-of-life care for African Americans and how we might go about rectifying historic and continuing injustices.

Yolonda Wilson
Yolonda Y. Wilson, Howard University

Yolonda Wilson holds a PhD in Philosophy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research interests include bioethics, social and political philosophy, race theory, and feminist philosophy. Professor Wilson’s work centers on race and gender justice, particularly in the health care realm. Her most recent article, “Intersectionality in Clinical Medicine: The Need for a Conceptual Framework,” is a consideration on applying intersectionality’s intellectual approach (how race, gender, and other social identities converge in order to create unique forms of oppression) in the clinical environment. Presently, Professor Wilson is at work on a monograph, Black Death: Racial Justice, Priority-Setting, and Care at the End of Life. She uses end-of-life care to argue that, given historic and continuing racial injustice leading to African Americans being unfairly burdened with ill health, African Americans have a special justice claim on health care.