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About Laurence Ralph

I am a Professor of Anthropology at Princeton University. Before that, I was a professor at Harvard University for 8 years. I earned my Ph.D. (2010) and Masters of Arts degrees (2006) in Anthropology from the University of Chicago, and a Bachelor of Science degree (2004) from Georgia Institute of Technology where I majored in History, Technology and Society. My research and writing explores how police abuse, mass incarceration, and the criminalization of the drug trade naturalize disease, disability, and premature death for urban residents of color, who are often seen as expendable by “polite” society. Theoretically, my research lies at the nexus of critical medical and political anthropology, African American studies, and emerging scholarship on disability. I combine these literatures to show how violence and injury play a central role in the daily lives of Black urban populations. I have explored these diverse themes in Anthropological Theory, Current Anthropology, Disability Studies Quarterly, Transition, Identities: Global Studies in Culture and Power as well as my books.