chapter  Chapter 9
“Negro/Slave Diseases” and Other Illnesses Attributed to or Affecting Enslaved Africans
WithKatherine Bankole-Medina
Pages 12

In the available research in the field of enslavement and medicine no other area is as intriguing as the material available on "Negro/Slave Diseases." The identification of "Negro/Slave Diseases" was a direct manifestation of the human/subhuman issue. Extending from that basic premise, people of African descent would logically contract and manifest diseases and illnesses that were race-specific, and more importantly, different from those contracted by Whites. The "Negro/Slave Diseases" that extended from a racial supremacist orientation include: Negro Consumption, Cachexia Africana, Drapetomania, and Dysaesthesia Aethiopica. Other illnesses that significantly affected Whites, and yet caused them to observe closely their course in the African, include: Dysentery, Yellow Fever, Cholera and Diarrhea. However, all of these illnesses share some specific racial components when applied to enslaved Africans in the antebellum South.