Cover image for Medicine ways : disease, health, and survival among Native Americans
Medicine ways : disease, health, and survival among Native Americans
Trafzer, Clifford E.
Publication Information:
Walnut Creek, CA : AltaMira Press, [2001]

Physical Description:
xx, 282 pages ; 24 cm.
Removing the heart of the Choctaw people: Indian removal from a Native perspective / Donna L. Akers -- Blood came from their mouths: Tongva and Chumash responses to the pandemic of 1801 / Edward D. Castillo -- "In the fall of the year we were troubled with some sickness": typhoid fever deaths at Sherman Institute, 1904 / Jean A. Keller -- Blinded with science: American Indians, the Office of Indian Affairs, and the Federal campaign against trachoma, 1924-1927 / Todd Benson -- Infant mortality on the Yakama Indian Reservation, 1914-1964 / Clifford E. Trafzer -- American Indian views on public-health nursing, 1930-1950 / Nancy Reifel -- Interpreting ideas about diabetes, genetics, and inheritance / Diane Weiner -- The embodiment of a working identity: power and process in Rarámuri ritual healing / Jerome M. Levi -- Meeting the challenges of American Indian diabetes: anthropological perspectives on prevention and treatment / Brooke Olson -- Pathways to health: an American Indian breast-cancer education project / Felicia Schanche Hodge and John Casken -- Cancer among American Indians and Alaska natives: trouble with numbers / Linda Burhansstipanov, James W. Hampton, and Martha J. Tenney -- The origins of Navajo youth gangs / Eric Henderson, Stephen J. Kunitz, and Jerrold E. Levy -- Helplessness, hopelessness, and despair: identifying the precursors to Indian youth suicide -- Self-sufficiency and community revitalization among American Indians in the southwest: American Indian leadership training / Jeanette Hassin and Robert S. Young.

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Call Number
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Item Holds
E98.M4 M43 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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Improving the dire health problems faced by many Native American communities is central to their cultural, political, and economic well being. However, it is still too often the case that both theoretical studies and applied programs fail to account for Native American perspectives on the range of factors that actually contribute to these problems in the first place. The authors in Medicine Ways examine the ways people from a multitude of indigenous communities think about and practice health care within historical and socio-cultural contexts. Cultural and physical survival are inseparable for Native Americans. Chapters explore biomedically-identified diseases, such as cancer and diabetes, as well as Native-identified problems, including historical and contemporary experiences such as forced evacuation, assimilation, boarding school, poverty and a slew of federal and state policies and initiatives. They also explore applied solutions that are based in community prerogatives and worldviews, whether they be indigenous, Christian, biomedical, or some combination of all three. Medicine Ways is an important volume for scholars and students in Native American studies, medical anthropology, and sociology as well as for health practitioners and professionals working in and for tribes. Visit the UCLA American Indian Studies Center web site

Author Notes

Clifford E. Trafzer (Wyandot) is a professor of history and director of Native American Studies at the University of California, Riverside. Diane Weiner is a professional research anthropologist at the American Indian Studies Center, University of California, Los Angeles.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

This volume presents timely, authoritative, and chilling accounts of disease, death, and sociocultural devastation in Native American and Alaskan communities over the past 200 years. It tells of a disastrous pandemic among southern California Indians in 1801; the catastrophic removal and 500-mile forced march of the Choctaw in the 1830s; a typhoid epidemic in an Indian boarding school in 1904; the use of deleterious surgical procedures to treat trachoma on several thousand Indians in the 1920s; extremely high rates of infant mortality on the Yakima Indian Reservation for five decades up to 1964. Other chapters deal with diabetes, cancer, suicide among youth, and the emergence of antisocial youth gangs. A pervasive theme is that the afflictions documented here result in large part from the dominant society's manipulation and destruction of Native American sociocultural, economic, political, and spiritual environments. A final chapter, on "community revitalization," indicates that organized efforts are underway to ensure that Native Americans take active roles in developing programs to improve the health and welfare of current and future generations of their people. The volume's 14 essays are by 21 authors, seven of whom are Native American. All collections. E. Wellin emeritus, University of Wisconsin--Milwaukee

Table of Contents

Clifford E. Trafzer and Diane WeinerDonna L. AkersEdward D. CastilloJean A. KellerTodd BensonClifford E. TrafzerNancy ReifelDiane WeinerJerome M. LeviBrooke OlsonFelicia Schanche Hodge and John CaskenLinda Burhansstipanov and James W. Hampton and Martha J. TenneyEric Henderson and Stephen J. Kunitz and Jerrold E. LevyTroy Johnson and Holly TomrenJeanette Hassin and Robert S. Young
Introductionp. vii
1 Removing the Heart of the Choctaw People: Indian Removal from a Native Perspectivep. 1
2 Blood Came from Their Mouths: Tongva and Chumash Responses to the Pandemic of 1801p. 16
3 "In the fall of the year we were troubled with some sickness": Typhoid Fever Deaths at Sherman Institute, 1904p. 32
4 Blinded with Science: American Indians, the Office of Indian Affairs, and the Federal Campaign against Trachoma, 1924-1927p. 52
5 Infant Mortality on the Yakama Indian Reservation, 1914-1964p. 76
6 American Indian Views of Public-Health Nursing, 1930-1950p. 95
7 Interpreting Ideas about Diabetes, Genetics, and Inheritancep. 108
8 The Embodiment of a Working Identity: Power and Process in Raramuri Ritual Healingp. 134
9 Meeting the Challenges of American Indian Diabetes: Anthropological Perspectives on Prevention and Treatmentp. 163
10 Pathways to Health: An American Indian Breast-Cancer Education Projectp. 185
11 Cancer among American Indians and Alaska Natives: Trouble with Numbersp. 199
12 The Origins of Navajo Youth Gangsp. 222
13 Helplessness, Hopelessness, and Despair: Identifying the Precursors to Indian Youth Suicidep. 234
14 Self-Sufficiency and Community Revitalization among American Indians in the Southwest: American Indian Leadership Trainingp. 251
Indexp. 273
About the Contributorsp. 280