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Racism, Medicine and Why We Need to Decolonise Healthcare

The front cover of the book 'Divided' by Annabel Sowemimo

A vital call to action.

Leah Hazard

An eye-opening exploration of race and health.

In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, we are all too aware of the urgent health inequalities that plague our world. But these inequalities have always been urgent: modern medicine has a colonial and racist history.

Here, in an essential and searingly truthful account, Annabel Sowemimo unravels the colonial roots of modern medicine. Tackling systemic racism, hidden histories and healthcare myths, Sowemimo recounts her own experiences as a doctor, patient and activist.

‘Divided’ exposes the racial biases of medicine that affect our everyday lives and provides an illuminating – and incredibly necessary – insight into how our world works, and who it works for.

This book will reshape how we see health and medicine – for ever.

An illuminating and powerful intersectional analysis of health inequalities and racism.

i-D Magazine

Outstanding… Beautifully written and erudite, yet highly accessible… Should be mandatory reading for all medical practitioners.

Jacqueline Roy, author of ‘The Fat Lady Sings’

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Date published
416 pages

About the author

Photograph of Annabel Sowemimo

Annabel Sowemimo


Dr Annabel Sowemimo is a doctor, activist and writer. As well as being a sexual and reproductive health registrar in the NHS, she is also the founder of community-based organisation Reproductive Justice Initiative, formed to address the colonial history of sexual and reproductive health. Annabel is a PhD candidate and Harold Moody Scholar at King’s College London. Her first book, ‘Divided’ (Wellcome Collection/Profile Books), publishes in April 2023.