The Last of the Medicine Men

Overview

In The Last of the Medicine Men, author Benedict Allen, explores the mysterious and dramatic world of healers, who are popularly referred to as witchdoctors. In the diverse communities of the world, healing roles are assumed by faithhealers, shamans, psychotherapists, priests, performers, and even poets. Specifically, The Last of the Medicine Men examines the form and function these enigmatic characters take in four different cultures -- the provincial towns of Haiti and the Dominican Republic, the jungles of ...
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2001 Hardcover New jacket First Edition. Hardcover with dust jacket, Brand New, clean, tight, unmarked, 6 1/2 x 9 1/2, Black cloth, full colour photo illustrations, index, 240 ... pages. -Witchdoctors can be priests, psychotherapists, performers, poets and entertainers to their communities, as well as doctors. In this fascinating series Benedict Allen examines four diverse cultures and places-the shanty towns of Haiti, the jungles of Siberut Island, the wastes of Siberia and the arid mountains of Mexico-and investigates the role of t. Read more Show Less

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Overview

In The Last of the Medicine Men, author Benedict Allen, explores the mysterious and dramatic world of healers, who are popularly referred to as witchdoctors. In the diverse communities of the world, healing roles are assumed by faithhealers, shamans, psychotherapists, priests, performers, and even poets. Specifically, The Last of the Medicine Men examines the form and function these enigmatic characters take in four different cultures -- the provincial towns of Haiti and the Dominican Republic, the jungles of Siberut Island, the wastes of Siberia, and the arid mountains of Mexico. The author investigates roles of medicine men by observing their customs -- even taking part in these rituals himself -- unveiling the varied, complex, and colorful spirits of Shamanism and suggesting what we in the Western world can learn from them.
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Editorial Reviews

VOYA
In this companion to the BBC television series, four different cultures are examined through observations of customs and rituals. Allen is a marvelous explorer and raconteur whose mission to find the healers of Haiti, Indonesia's Siberut Island, Siberia, and the mountains of Mexico is filled with the mystery and intrigue of the spirit world. His unique voice discloses incredible data, creating an open window into everyday life and faith. Haiti feels like the home of voodoo, where people have felt threatened by man and nature. The cruelty of the physical world is evident. Shamanism has become the official religion in Siberia, where medicine men also serve in the role of priest. The barren Sierra Madre Mountains of Mexico are home to the Huichols, who grow maize and worship sun gods. The direct connection between faith and agricultural success is emphasized in these little communities. Siberut Island forests provide medicines for every want imaginable, and the people take comfort in knowing that their needs are filled in this isolated environment. The remarkable powers that Allen has witnessed come alive for the reader in his text, and fabulous photographs document his experiences. This lengthy reference source is appropriate for middle schoolers as well as high school and college level researchers. Although tribal vocabulary words are italicized throughout the text, a glossary is not included. Index. Photos. Maps. Biblio. VOYA CODES: 4Q 3P M J S (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Will appeal with pushing; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2000, DK, 240p, $30. Ages 11 to 18.Reviewer: Nancy Zachary
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780789471840
  • Publisher: DK Publishing, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/1/2000
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 9.46 (w) x 6.42 (h) x 1.15 (d)

Meet the Author

Benedict Allen has a voracious appetite for adventure. Traveler, modern-day explorer, a sensitive sociologist, he lives for months on end with only the assistance of remote, indigenous 'tribal' people to guide him. Pioneering the use of a hand-held TV camera, he has filmed his own expeditions for the BBC series, "Witchdoctors." His book, The Last of the Medicine Men, published in the US by Dorling Kindersley, accompanies that series. Allen is the author of several other books resulting from his adventures in the Amazon, New Guinea, Australia's Gibson Desert, and Sumatra, among them the best-selling Skeleton Coast: A Journey Through the Namib Desert and Edge of Blue Heaven: A Journey Through Mongolia.
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Table of Contents

Introduction 6
Indonesia: Spirit Healers of the Rainforest 10
Chapter 111
Chapter 227
Chapter 347
Siberia: Shamans in the Steppe 66
Chapter 467
Chapter 590
Chapter 6104
Haiti: Vodou Beyond the Shanty Town 124
Chapter 7125
Chapter 8145
Chapter 9168
Mexico: Pilgrimage to the Desert Gods 182
Chapter 10183
Chapter 11203
Chapter 12225
Bibliography 238
Index 239
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