Eric Silla adds a new dimension to the Social History of Africa Series through a compelling account of leprosy (Hansen's Disease) in colonial and post-colonial Mali. Unlike many studies of health and disease, People Are Not the Same draws on an extensive collection of life histories to elaborate the perspectives of patients themselves. It thereby weaves the transformation of "leper" identities with changes in medical and social responses to the disease. by situating seemingly local experiences of patients within the larger context of national and global change, Silla deepens our historical understanding of a wide range of issues including stigma, marginality, begging, and migration. He explains how the debilitating nature of leprosy interfered with one's ability to marry, farm, and participate in other facets of "normal" life. Leprosy sufferers became outcasts in their villages and often migrated to treatment centers in Bamako and other towns. At these centers, patients constructed self-conscious communities which empowered them socially and politically. By privileging African voices in the experience of the disease, Silla presents a moving portrait of leprosy survivors that belies their stereotype as pitiable victims. His study reveals them instead as vibrant historical actors. It is an innovative contribution to the history of French colonialism and of socialism, dictatorship, and democracy in independent Africa. The example of leprosy in Mali also raises important questions about Western public health programs that emphasize biological cures with little regard for social rehabilitation.