Graduation Year

Spring 2013

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Lara Deeb

Reader 2

Paula Palmer

Rights Information

© 2013 Hannah Rapp


In 2010, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention discovered a geographic concentration of Type 2 Diabetes patients in 11 Southeastern states in the United States. Since its acknowledgement by the public health community, little has been done to address the rising rates of diabetes onset and resulting mortality. This thesis provides a medical anthropology analysis to the 'Belt' by critiquing secondary sources in order to construct a productive discussion on socio-medical contributors to Type 2 Diabetes. My thesis documents the numerous social, economic, political, historical, and medical barriers to health equality in the Southern United States and their influence in determining individual, community and population health. Additionally my thesis provides policy recommendations that if enacted, would dramatically equalize the United States health care system. By addressing a current public health crisis in the United States, my thesis provides necessary scholarship on health inequality in the 21st century.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.