I found the reading this week incredibly interesting as more because it focused less on the biological aspects of a problem and more on the ways in which socioeconomics can affect all aspects of health. Especially in the Dressler reading, it is evident that many health professionals have difficulty thinking about race as both a biological construction and a “culturally constructed identity” (Dressler 232). The most surprising point in the Dressler article was the short discussion on smoking. I would have thought the socioeconomic status of racial difference would influence the percentage of smokers much more than it did. In fact, Dressler mentions, “Smoking is not a factor likely to account for health disparities because there is virtually no difference in rates of smoking between black and white men” (Dressler 237). I also found the paper’s mentions of stress effecting health pertinent to our readings from last week. I was most surprised reading the Viruell-Fuentes research because I through the results would have demonstrated greater “othering” noted by first generation women. However, upon reading the article, it made perfect sense why second generation women experienced and felt stressed and victimized a significantly more by non-Hispanic peers. At first I was confused as to how the data the team received related to health, but in the final stages and conclusions of their research, the health aspect came to light and I was able to relate the previous Dressler article to predict the outcomes of “othering” on health as a psychosocial stressor which could have a negative impact.
Dressler, William W. Oths, Kathryn S. Gravlee, Clarence C. Race and Ethnicity in Public Health Research: Models to Explain Health Disparities. Annual Reviews. 2005.