Author: Daniel J. Fairbanks
Copyright @ 2015 by Daniel J. Fairbanks
Published by Prometheus Books
Fairbanks provides the results of scientific research in genetics which undermines the notion that there are distinct differences between the human races. “Race is an exceedingly slippery concept…while it is a biological fiction, it is nonetheless a social fact.” “Race is a socially constructed concept, not a biological one.” “In scientific terms, racial differences have no material significance.”
This fascinating book shows how science, particularly human biogenetics is eroding the biological basis of the idea of race. With the advances in scientific technology including gene sequencing, scientists are now able to show that “human” differences are due to variances in the same set of common genes. Some of these variances are adaptive due to the environments that humans migrated to from Africa. Prime examples are sickle cell disease which is a genetic variance which protects the body against malaria and light skin (recessive melanin production) is a protective genetic variance to prevent Vit. D deficiency which leads to bone diseases such as rickets.
Fairbanks discusses how the focus on medications specifically for particular races was an ill-thought of idea. Drug developers made assumptions based of how people self-identified their race. The result was poor outcomes due to the lack of information on the genetic variances.
Everyone is African shows that despite waning conventional beliefs, there is oftentimes more variance among people who live in the same geographical area than in distant populations.
Daniel J. Fairbanks is a research geneticist. He has a wide breadth of expertise in evolutionary genetics, international scientific development, science education and the history of science.