The Racial and Social Justice Book Club Series was created as part of our department's commitment to eliminate racial disparities, achieve racial equity, promote fair treatment in healthcare, reduce the abuse of rights within medicine, consider our patients’ biopsychosocial contexts, pay heed to voices of the most vulnerable people, and avoid preventable disease in the communities we serve. Most importantly, the Racial and Social Justice Book Club Series invites healthcare workers to normalize discussion about and consider the significance of protecting human and civil rights within the medical setting.
Thus far, the Racial and Social Justice Book Club Series has explored Black and African American health disparities and experience with health care; history of abusive and unethical medical research and experimentation on Black and African Americans; Trans medicine and barriers to health care; medical gatekeeping of Trans bodies; sexism and gender bias in STEM; diverse women in STEM and intersectionality; Latinx/e/a/o health in the U.S., Latinx/e/a/o representation in medicine; sustainable radiology practices; sustainability and environmental justice; violence and racism experienced by Jewish, Muslim, and Asian American and Pacific Islander communities; among other topics.
The organizing committee of the Racial and Social Justice Book Club discussed the approach to studying literature and humanities within the medical setting in the form of a peer-reviewed academic article entitled “Hiding in plain sight: How incorporating honest discussion of racial and social (in)justice into medical education can inspire change” (Clinical Imaging, 2022). The academic article presents reciprocal learning and exchange, cultural competence and humility, and the process of unlearning as necessary in the act of becoming antiracist, a concept that is applicable to all since none is immune to bias or free of blind spots.