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As a field of inquiry, social inequalities in health has burgeoned. Although it has not yet been elevated to the status of having its own National Library of Medicine MeSH (medical subject) heading, the decades from 1970 has seen the number of papers on PubMed using it as a key term rise sharply: 12 listings in the decade 1970–9, 272 listings two decades later (1990–9). In the last eight years (2000–7) 537 papers were published. Against this background growth in journal articles, there has been concomitant growth in published monographs and edited collections. The latest of these is Social Inequalities in Health: New Evidence and Policy Implications. When I was invited to review this book I was delighted. I hadn’t read it, …