Anthropologists' views on race, ancestry, and genetics

Jennifer K. Wagner, Joon Ho Yu, Jayne O. Ifekwunigwe, Tanya M. Harrell, Michael J. Bamshad, Charmaine D. Royal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


Controversies over race conceptualizations have been ongoing for centuries and have been shaped, in part, by anthropologists. Objective: To assess anthropologists' views on race, genetics, and ancestry. Methods: In 2012 a broad national survey of anthropologists examined prevailing views on race, ancestry, and genetics. Results: Results demonstrate consensus that there are no human biological races and recognition that race exists as lived social experiences that can have important effects on health. Discussion: Racial privilege affects anthropologists' views on race, underscoring the importance that anthropologists be vigilant of biases in the profession and practice. Anthropologists must mitigate racial biases in society wherever they might be lurking and quash any sociopolitical attempts to normalize or promote racist rhetoric, sentiment, and behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)318-327
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Physical Anthropology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anatomy
  • Anthropology


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