My research focuses on the history of race in public health, medicine, and technology. My particular interests center on how biological understandings of race obscure the structural causes of health inequality. My monograph titled "Breathing Race into the Machine: The Surprising Career of the Spirometer From Plantation to Genetics" examines how ideas about racial difference shaped and were shaped by the development, application, and globalization of lung capacity measurements from 1844 to the present. A related project explores the history of work-related respiratory disease in the mines of South Africa and their global invisibility.

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Lundy Braun is a Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and Africana Studies and a member of the STS Program. Her research takes an interdisciplinary approach to analyze the structural causes of health inequality. Projects include 1) the transnational circulation of knowledge about racial difference, lung capacity measurements, and respiratory disease in the 19th and 20th centuries; 2) the socio-political and economic production of invisibility about occupational disease, especially those due to asbestos and silica exposure in the mines of South Africa, and the consequences of invisibility for global health inequality; and 3) race, genomics, and health inequality. She has participated in national and international workshops on the current debate over race, genetics, and health. She has been a recipient of a Professional Development Award from the NSF; a Fulbright Senior Specialist in Public Health at the University of Cape Town, South Africa; and a Scholar Award from the NSF.

LUNDY BRAUN, Ph.D., 1982 Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health
Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and Africana Studies
Phone: 401-863-3308

Lundy Braun's Brown Research URL:

Collaborators at other institutions:
Kay Dickersin
Sophie Kisting

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