In the current model of health dispensation in South Africa there are two major paradigms, the spirit-inspired tradition ofizangoma sinyangaand biomedicine. These operate at best in parallel, but more often than not are at odds with one another. This book, based on the author's personal experience as a practitioner of traditional African medicine, considers the effects of the absence of spirit in biomedicine on collaborative relationships. Given the unprecedented challenge of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the country, the author suggests that more cooperation is vital. Taking a critical look at the role of anthropology in this endeavor, she proposes the development of a "language of spirit" by means of which the spirit-inspired aetiology ofizangoma sinyangamay be made comprehensible to academic scientists and applicable to medical interventions. The author discusses whiteizangomain the context of current debates on healing and hybridity and insists that there exists a powerful role forizangomain the realm of societal healing. Above all, the book constitutes a start in what the author hopes will develop into an ongoing intellectual conversation between traditional African healing, academe, and biomedicine in South Africa.
Subjects: Anthropology, Religion, Health Sciences
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