by Rupa Marya and Raj Patel
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Raj Patel, the New York Times bestselling author of The Value of Nothing, teams up with physician, activist, and co-founder of the Do No Harm Coalition Rupa Marya to reveal the links between health and structural injustices--and to offer a new deep medicine that can heal our bodies and our world.
The Covid pandemic and the shocking racial disparities in its impact. The surge in inflammatory illnesses such as gastrointestinal disorders and asthma. Mass uprisings around the world in response to systemic racism and violence. Rising numbers of climate refugees. Our bodies, societies, and planet are inflamed.
Boldly original, Inflamed takes us on a medical tour through the human body--our digestive, endocrine, circulatory, respiratory, reproductive, immune, and nervous systems. Unlike a traditional anatomy book, this groundbreaking work illuminates the hidden relationships between our biological systems and the profound injustices of our political and economic systems. Inflammation is connected to the food we eat, the air we breathe, and the diversity of the microbes living inside us, which regulate everything from our brain's development to our immune system's functioning. It's connected to the number of traumatic events we experienced as children and to the traumas endured by our ancestors. It's connected not only to access to health care but to the very models of health that physicians practice.
Raj Patel, the renowned political economist and New York Times bestselling author of The Value of Nothing, teams up with the physician Rupa Marya to offer a radical new cure: the deep medicine of decolonization. Decolonizing heals what has been divided, reestablishing our relationships with the Earth and one another. Combining the latest scientific research and scholarship on globalization with the stories of Marya's work with patients in marginalized communities, activist passion, and the wisdom of Indigenous groups, Inflamed points the way toward a deep medicine that has the potential to heal not only our bodies, but the world.
"Inspired by the work of Frantz Fanon and Michel Foucault, among others, the authors examine the 'myriad ways' systemic injustice impacts mind and body under the stress of eugenics, exposure to various kinds of trauma, and medical dehumanization. This is a powerful, knowledgeable, and important work about the dangerous connection between health and societal injustices and how it can be resolved." -- starred review, Booklist
"At once empathetic and skeptical of power, [ Inflamed] is bold and searching in its examination of the ways in which the human body has exhibited the consequences of a specific economic and political system . . . 'Settler ideologies have circumscribed the imagination, ' they write. The future is creative work." -- Sarah Jones, The Nation
About the Authors:
Dr. Rupa Marya is a physician, an activist, a mother, and a composer. She is an associate professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, where she practices and teaches internal medicine. She is a cofounder of the Do No Harm Coalition, a collective of health workers committed to addressing disease through structural change. At the invitation of Lakhóta health leaders, she is helping to set up the Mni Wiconi Clinic and Farm at Standing Rock to decolonize medicine and food. She is a cofounder of the Deep Medicine Circle, an organization committed to healing the wounds of colonialism through food, medicine, story, and learning. Working with her husband, the agroecological farmer Benjamin Fahrer, and the Association of Ramaytush Ohlone, she is a part of the Farming Is Medicine project, where farmers are recast as ecological stewards of rematriated land and food is liberated from the market economy. She has toured twenty-nine countries with her band, Rupa and the April Fishes, whose music was described by the legend Gil Scott-Heron as "Liberation Music."
Raj Patel is a research professor at the University of Texas at Austin's Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, a professor in the university's department of nutrition, and a research associate at Rhodes University, South Africa. He is the author of Stuffed and Starved and the New York Times bestselling The Value of Nothing, and the coauthor of A History of the World in Seven Cheap Things. A James Beard Foundation Leadership Award winner, he is the codirector of a groundbreaking documentary on climate change and the global food system, The Ants and the Grasshopper. He serves on the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems and has advised governments worldwide on the causes of and solutions to crises of sustainability.