Reparations: A Viable Strategy to Address the Enigma of African American Health

David R. Williams, Chiquita Collins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Black-White differences in health are large, persistent, and in some cases, worsening over time. Racial segregation is a central determinant of Black-White differences in health. The physical separation of the races in residential areas is an institutional mechanism of racism that remains a primary determinant of racial differences in economic circumstances. These differences in social and economic conditions are largely responsible for racial differences in health status. Reparations are a potentially effective strategy to rebuild the infrastructure of disadvantaged, segregated communities. Such investment would enhance the economic circumstances of African American families and communities and also improve their health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)977-1000
Number of pages24
JournalAmerican Behavioral Scientist
Issue number7
StatePublished - Mar 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Health status
  • Race
  • Racism
  • Reparations
  • Residential segregation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Social Sciences


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