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Colonization, cadavers, and color: Considering decolonization of anatomy curricula

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Jo Matthan



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


© 2022 The Authors. The Anatomical Record published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Association for Anatomy. Anatomy is a discipline that, despite its universal nature, offers limited diversity in terms of representation in cadavers, imagery, technology, and models used within teaching. The universal move toward inclusive curricula has put anatomy education under the microscope, particularly with respect to efforts to decolonize curricula. This paper considers the challenges and opportunities to diversify the anatomy curriculum. Decolonizing anatomy education curricula will entail addressing the ingrained cultures within the disciplines, such that produces a number of challenges including: underrepresentation of certain bodies, difficulty talking about difference, and the hidden curriculum in anatomy education. In order to aid educators in achieving inclusive anatomy curricula, a toolkit and considerations are presented, alongside both do’s, don’ts and case examples. We highlight the black-or-white dichotomy, and the absence of brown in between. The paper is a conversation starter for what it means to begin the process of decolonizing the curriculum within anatomy education.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Finn GM, Danquah A, Matthan J

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Anatomical Record

Year: 2022

Pages: E-Pub ahead of Print

Online publication date: 05/01/2022

Acceptance date: 30/11/2021

Date deposited: 01/02/2022

ISSN (print): 1932-8486

ISSN (electronic): 1932-8494

Publisher: John Wiley and Sons Inc


DOI: 10.1002/ar.24855

Notes: Special Issue Article


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