Fall 2024
ID 254
September 3 - October 25
Go to course site

Political Epidemiology: Oppression and Resistance as Determinants of Health


This course examines the social and political determinants of health, focusing on historic and ongoing systems of structural discrimination and exclusion which harm health and threaten health equity. It is intended to be an introductory course and will use examples from both the United States and a number of other countries/regions to explore how power and politics shape health and health equity. Through a series of lectures by scholars of health justice, this course will enable students to analyze how history and institutional dynamics shape health as well as scientific knowledge about health. Using casestudy presentations and referencing a range of theoretical frameworks, from settler colonialism to racial capitalism, the course aims to show how research can support advocacy and community efforts to advance health justice. While the course predominantly focuses on structural racism and health, it will also underscore the need to take account of structural discrimination based on ability/disability status, sexual orientation and gender identity, and legal status, to name a few. ​A course materials fee may apply for this course. An upper estimate is listed below, and the final materials fee will be communicated to enrolled students at the beginning of the term. For more information and a list of past years’ materials fees for the current semester’s courses, please visit the Curriculum Center website. Course Requirements: Course Restricted: Course open to MPH-GEN students only

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Course Level
Interest Area
Public Health & Medicine
Cross Registration
Not Available