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Study shows the detrimental health of effects 'John Henryism'

People of color facing different adverse health effects [shutterstock]
People of color facing different adverse health effects [shutterstock]

The social determinants of health for people of color have been discussed at length on this program.

Think of how factors like: where someone lives, where they work, and where they play or go to school - and how those experiences for say, African Americans; are different than for white individuals.

Those factors have been studied, and are proven to have an impact a person's physical or mental health.

It's also been documented that those people of color in some situations have to work harder, often to achieve the same outcomes of their white counterparts.

That tactic, or result, has been nicknamed 'John Henryism', after a folk hero from the 19th century. He was an African American railroad worker in West Virginia, who raced against a steam-powered machine, driving railroad ties into solid rock - winning the race - only to then die from exhaustion.
He had to work so hard to not be replaced by the machine, that it killed him. At least that's how the story goes.

We'll focus on John Henryism for the first part of the show, and hear from a researcher from Case Western Reserve University who was involved in a recent study looking at health effects on people of color.

Then shift gears to preview the Cincinnati Bengal's first Super Bowl appearance in 33 years. Cory Sharber, a reporter at WVXU in Cincinnati joins me to talk football, and maybe chili too.

Finally, we close the week with another episode of WKSU's "Shuffle" podcast. This time diving into the Akron Heritage Music Project.

- Ann Nguyen, Assistant Professor, Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, Case Western Reserve University

- Cory Sharber, Reporter, WVXU Public Radio

- Amanda Rabinowitz, Morning Edition Host and Producer, WKSU’s “Shuffle”

Drew Maziasz is a coordinating producer for the "Sound of Ideas" and also serves as the show’s technical producer.