Alan Goodman

Professor of Biological Anthropology
alan goodman
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Alan Goodman
Cole Science Center 110
413.549.4600

Alan Goodman, professor of biological anthropology, teaches and writes on the health and nutritional consequences of political-economic processes such as poverty, inequality, and racism. His current research includes projects on malnutrition in Mexico and Egypt, and the stresses of slavery in New York.

Before coming to Hampshire, he received his Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts and was a postdoctoral fellow in international nutrition at University of Connecticut and a research fellow in stress physiology at Karolinska Institute, Stockholm. Goodman previously served as Hampshire's dean of faculty and the president of the American Anthropological Association (AAA). He continues to co-direct the AAA's public education project on race (understandingrace.org).

Personal Website

Recent and Upcoming Courses

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  • How does injustice get under the skin? Groups with more material resources (wealth) and more access to power almost always life longer and suffer from fewer diseases. However, reasons vary for why there is an association between wealth and health. In this course we l start with the data showing the connections between inequalities and measures of health such as rates of COVID-19 and infant mortality. We explore changes in the US over time and compare the US to other countries. We finally focus on understanding the processes such as epigenetics, pollution and implicit racisms by which inequalities and injustices are causally linked to health. We will particularly focus on the changing dynamics of racism and class. Ultimately, we will explore the way that inequalities in the US might be getting under everyone's skin. Key Words: health, race, inequality, biology, poverty

  • Wherever one looks, one finds an association between wealth and health. The greater an individual, family or large social group's access to resources and political power, the better their health and nutrition. As well, how, how well, and why this connection applies also varies. In this course we will start with the data showing the connections between inequalities and measuress of health such as life expectancy and infant mortality, exploring the US over time and more equitable countries. We will then focus on understanding the processes from epigenetics to pollution to implicit racisms by which inequalities and injustices are causally linked to health. We will explore the changing dynamics of race and class in relationship to health and nutrition. Ultimately, we will explore the way that inequalities in the US might be harming everyone's health and wellbeing. Key words: nutrition, health, race, inequality, biology