Sarah A. Williams

Assistant Professor



Ph.D., 2021, University of Toronto


Sarah A. Williams, PhD, is an applied medical anthropologist, birthworker, and scholar of global and Indigenous perinatal health. Her scholarship is primarily focused on midwifery and obstetrics and the relationship between racialization, medical racism, and perinatal healthcare in Mexico and Canada. Her book project, entitled “Always Already Vanishing: Midwifery’s Future(s), Indigeneity, and the Mexican State,” traces midwifery organizing, professionalization, and collaboration to protect traditional midwifery and counter obstetric violence and racism in Mexico. She is currently the Co-Investigator and Qualitative Research Lead on the QueerCOVID-Toronto project, which is examining the impact of the pandemic and public health policy on queer people’s mental and physical health.

Research Interests

Medical Anthropology, Perinatal Health, Indigenous Health, Medical & Obstetric Racism, Queer Health


2022 Rice, Kathleen and Sarah A. Williams. “Increased use of birth interventions during the COVID-19 pandemic?: An exploratory qualitative study.” Annals of Family Medicine 20: Supplement 1. DOI:

2021 Rice, Kathleen and Sarah A. Williams. “Making Good Care Essential: The Impact of Increased Obstetric Interventions and Decreased Services during the COVID-19 Pandemic.” Women and Birth.

2021 Rice, Kathleen, and Sarah A. Williams. “Women’s postpartum experiences in Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic: a qualitative study.” Canadian Medical Association Journal open 9, no. 2 (2021): E556.

2020 Gibb, James K., L. Zachary DuBois, Sarah A. Williams, Luseadra McKerracher, Robert‐Paul Juster, and Jessica Fields. “Sexual and gender minority health vulnerabilities during the COVID‐19 health crisis.” American Journal of Human Biology: e23499.

2020 Williams, Sarah A. and Sabrina Speich. “Home versus the hospital: Negotiating birth location risk and midwifery’s value in Mexico.” In COVID-19 and SRH/MNH: A curated online collection for Medical Anthropology Quarterly. Medical Anthropology Quarterly.

2019 Williams, Sarah A. “Narratives of responsibility: Maternal mortality, reproductive governance, and midwifery in Mexico”. Social Science & Medicine. 254. 112227.

2016 Silver, Michelle Pannor and Sarah A. Williams. “Reluctance to retire: A qualitative study on work identity, intergenerational conflict, and retirement in academic medicine”. The Gerontologist. 58(2), 320-330.

2016 Williams, Sarah A. “Ideal citizens: The birthing of state truths and fictions in Quintana Roo.” Anthropology & Medicine. 23(3), 332-343.

2015 Silver, Michelle Pannor, Angela D. Hamilton, Avi Biswas, and Sarah A. Williams. “Life After Medicine: A Systematic Review of Studies of Physicians’ Adjustment to Retirement”. Archives of Community Medicine and Public Health. 1(1):026-032.

2015 Silver, Michelle Pannor, N. Celeste Pang, and Sarah A. Williams. ““Why Give Up Something That Works So Well?”: Retirement Expectations Among Academic Physicians.” Educational Gerontology. 41(5), 333-347.

Sarah A Williams
Contact Information
Office LocationBeach Hall (BCH) 431