Drapetomania was a supposed mental illness that American physician Samuel A. Cartwright hypothesized as the cause of black slaves running away in 1851.:41 It has since been debunked as pseudoscience:2 and part of scientific racism.
Etymology[change | change source]
Description[change | change source]
In Diseases and Peculiarities of the Negro Race, Cartwright points out that the Bible calls for a slave to obey his master, and that if he does, the slave won't want to run away.
He claimed that the disease happened when masters "made themselves too familiar with [slaves], treating them as equals".
References[change | change source]
- White, Kevin (2002). An introduction to the sociology of health and illness. SAGE. pp. 41, 42. ISBN 0-7619-6400-2.
- Caplan, Arthur; McCartney, James; Sisti, Dominic (2004). Health, disease, and illness: concepts in medicine. Georgetown University Press. ISBN 1-58901-014-0.
- Pilgrim, David (November 2005). "Question of the Month: Drapetomania". Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia. Retrieved 2007-10-04.
- Cartwright, Samuel A. (1851). "Diseases and Peculiarities of the Negro Race". DeBow's Review. XI. Retrieved 16 November 2011.
- Baynton, Douglas C. "Disability and the Justification of Inequality in American History". The New Disability History: American Perspectives, 2001.
Sources[change | change source]
- Samuel A. Cartwright, "Report on the Diseases and Physical Peculiarities of the Negro Race", The New Orleans Medical and Surgical Journal 1851:691–715 (May).
- Reprinted in DeBow's Review XI (1851). Available at Google Books and excerpted at PBS.org.
- Reprinted in Arthur Caplan, H. Tristram Engelhardt, Jr., and James McCartney, eds, Concepts of Health and Disease in Medicine: Interdisciplinary Perspectives (Boston: Addison-Wesley, 1980).
- Reprinted in Arthur L. Caplan, James J. McCartney, Dominic A. Sisti, eds, Health, Disease, and Illness: Concepts in Medicine (Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 2004) ISBN 1-58901-014-0