Mesoamerican Healers

Mesoamerican Healers

by Brad R. Huber, Alan R. Sandstrom
     
 

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Healing practices in Mesoamerica span a wide range, from traditional folk medicine with roots reaching back into the prehispanic era to westernized biomedicine. These sometimes cooperating, sometimes competing practices have attracted attention from researchers and the public alike, as interest in alternative medicine and holistic healing continues to grow. Responding

Overview

Healing practices in Mesoamerica span a wide range, from traditional folk medicine with roots reaching back into the prehispanic era to westernized biomedicine. These sometimes cooperating, sometimes competing practices have attracted attention from researchers and the public alike, as interest in alternative medicine and holistic healing continues to grow. Responding to this interest, the essays in this book offer a comprehensive, state-of-the-art survey of Mesoamerican healers and medical practices in Mexico and Guatemala. The first two essays describe the work of prehispanic and colonial healers and show how their roles changed over time. The remaining essays look at contemporary healers, including bonesetters, curers, midwives, nurses, physicians, social workers, and spiritualists. Using a variety of theoretical approaches, the authors examine such topics as the intersection of gender and curing, the recruitment of healers and their training, healers’ compensation and workload, types of illnesses treated and recommended treatments, conceptual models used in diagnosis and treatment, and the relationships among healers and between indigenous healers and medical and political authorities.

Editorial Reviews

Choice
"Since the literature on indigenous medicine in Mexico and Guatemala is rich but dispersed, this volume's value lies precisely in the comprehensive, authoritative, and updated coverage by the 14 contributing authors and the excellent bibliography."
Journal of Ethnopharmacology
"The book.... is an excellent textbook for broadening the scope of, for example, classes in ethnobotany and ethnopharmacy. At the same time, it is of course a very useful resource for anyone interested in medical anthropology."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780292779648
Publisher:
University of Texas Press
Publication date:
01/01/2010
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
19 MB
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What People are saying about this

Bernard Ortiz de Montellano
"This is an important book because there has been a need for an authoritative survey of medical practices in Mesoamerica. This has been an active research area, with widely dispersed reports, and this synthesis will fill a definite need. . . . The various authors are the recognized authorities in their field."

Meet the Author

Brad R. Huber is Associate Professor of Anthropology at the College of Charleston.

Alan R. Sandstrom is Professor of Anthropology at Indiana University–Purdue University Fort Wayne.

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