In her recent book, Zika: From the Brazilian Backlands to Global Threat, Debora Diniz provides an in‐depth look at the scientists and patients involved in the 2014 emergence of Zika virus in Brazil. This book provides a thought‐provoking insight into the search for answers surrounding the Brazilian Zika epidemic while highlighting the unlikely discoverers of the disease.Northeastern Brazil is presented as a forgotten and ignored place built on the backs of slaves and dispossessed indigenous peoples. This rural community faces substantial deficits in medical care compared to the central metropolises. Northeastern healthcare providers are dismissed as bush doctors and are not perceived by the larger health community as scientists or researchers. As a result, their diagnoses and medical files are viewed with skepticism and deemed untrustworthy. However, it was these marginalized doctors from the Northeast that initially identified the emergence of Zika in Brazil and its devastating vertical transmission between mothers and fetuses.What results is a book as much about the hegemonic nature of science as it is about the disease itself. It is about who is considered a legitimate scientist, and whose voices and research are prioritized. Stories of classism and sexism within the medical and scientific community
American Journal of Human Biology – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2018
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