The theme in the book is pain and suffering. This was especially common and severe for women who still had to care for their families alongside the harsh living conditions they were exposed to as slaves. Suffering is also evident where slaves and other minor groups of people were exposed to harmful substances for research purposes. Women in the general area weaker species to men a they are best suited for subtle work, however, as slaves, the women were forced to work just as hard as men.
Racism and discrimination are also a key theme in the book. The African Americans were discriminated because of their color. Although other minority groups were discriminated, the blacks had the worst experience because they were not only poor but also considered valueless in the eyes of the white man. Leaders, like Nelson Mandela and Barrack Obama, have fought hard to ensure this notion is utterly forgotten.
As a health worker, Washington gained access to medical journals that told of the suffering the African Americans underwent in the hands of the doctors. She condemns the doctors who were stood aside and let poor blacks suffer the Tuskegee study for failing to control the spread of syphilis, yet they had the means to contain it. According to the medical literature, the experiments were conducted in the e past and despite the numerous change the society has experienced, blacks still do not trust doctors hence they get poor quality health services than the whites.
The objective of writing the book was, to improve the health standards of the black people. However, critics believe the book will achieve just the opposite and widen the health divide that has been in existence over the years. Social workers have been of much help in the society because they identify problem areas in the society and they assist in correcting the problem. Washington discovered that there existed some issues that resulted in poor health for black people. To solve this, she researched the root of the problem and through this book; she attempts to seal this rift between blacks and whites in health care. Social workers have also helped marginalized people to access services that would otherwise be inaccessible. In addition, help the marginalized people to feel safe in a society that ignores them as well as their needs. They ensure the marginalized people have safe homes, adequate basic needs and the best medical services available. In other words, social workers represent the voice of the marginalized people in society.