“Vaccines and (Dis-)trust in Medical Science in Times of Crisis” is the topic of the third panel in a series of discussions on ”Racism in History and Context” organized by the German Historical Institute Washington, the German Historical Association (Verband der Historiker und Historikerinnen Deutschlands), and the Institute of European Studies at UC Berkeley. On March 9, Ute Frevert (Max Planck Institute for Human Development), Samuel K. Roberts (Columbia University), Sarah B. Rodriguez (Northwestern University), and Malte Thießen (LWL-Institut für westfälische Regionalgeschichte) will discuss the deep historical roots of trust and distrust in medical and scientific authority.
Around the globe, the Covid-19 pandemic continues to disproportionately affect racialized populations. Structural disadvantages in access to health care and doubts about the integrity of medical scientists arguably have reduced the effectiveness of vaccines as a cure for the global crisis. This panel will use vaccines as a lens through which to investigate past experiences that inform today’s discourses and developments in Europe and in the U.S.
The panel will focus on dynamics that have influenced the historical relationship between medical science and public health, on the one hand, and society and racism, on the other. For example, what is the legacy of medical experimentation on racialized groups in both Europe and in the U.S.? What role has race played in the trust or distrust of medical experts and public health authorities?
The 90-minute panel discussion will be held in English via zoom; the audience will be able to submit questions via chat.