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UKRI-AHRC funded Scenes of Shame and Stigma in COVID-19 Seminar

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Understanding Racism-Induced Stress in the Context of COVID-19 with Dr Tanisha Spratt

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A Scenes of Shame and Stigma in COVID-19 Seminar with Dr Tanisha Spratt: 'Understanding Racism-Induced Stress in the Context of COVID-19: Representations of Shame, Anxiety and Stigma in UK BAME Communities'.

This seminar is part of the Scenes of Shame and Stigma in Covid-19 Seminar Series, and is organised by the Scenes of Shame and Stigma in COVID-19 Research Project, funded by the UKRI-AHRC “Ideas to Address COVID” rapid response grant.

Understanding Racism-Induced Stress in the Context of COVID-19: Representations of Shame, Anxiety and Stigma in UK BAME Communities.

The disparate impact of COVID-19 on UK BAME communities, despite BAME communities having ostensibly equal access to NHS services and public health advice, offers a compelling reason to take a closer look at the relationship between race, racism and health. Whilst UK government officials have attributed the increased risk of mortality amongst BAME groups to various eco-social and health-related drivers (i.e. increased occupational exposure and existing co-morbidities), researchers are increasingly becoming interested in the role of racism-induced stress in COVID-19-related deaths and serious illness. Research shows that racism-induced stress can lead to an increase in allostatic load (defined as gradual wear and tear on the body), which can weaken the immune system and significantly increases the risk of BAME groups developing negative long-term health outcomes, including: hypertension, heart disease, lupus, asthma and diabetes. With the global rise of anti-Chinese sentiment following the COVID-19 outbreak and the resurgence of Black Lives Matter following the murder of George Floyd in May 2020 came an increased awareness of how everyday forms of racism inform negative health outcomes. This presentation will explore this relationship by using online narratives of race-related shame, anxiety and stigma in the context of COVID-19 to better understand the negative ways that systemic racism impacts health.

Dr Tanisha Spratt is a postdoctoral researcher in the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford. Her research explores the social, conceptual and political dimensions of existing health inequities, with a particular focus on behavioural medicine, biopolitics, obesity and racism.

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Organized in collaboration with the Wellcome funded Shame and Medicine Project.


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Organizer Wellcome Centre for the Cultures + Environments of Health

Organizer of UKRI-AHRC funded Scenes of Shame and Stigma in COVID-19 Seminar

The Wellcome Centre for Cultures + Environments of Health is a centre of excellence that aims to develop and sustain cultures and environments that support health and well-being.

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