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THE EFFECTS OF WESTERN MEDICINE ON THE LIVELIHOOD OF ZULU TRADITIONAL HERBAL HEALERS IN SOUTH AFRICA

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Date Issued:
2015
Abstract/Description:
The majority of South African citizens experience inadequate healthcare due to underfunding, mismanagement, staff shortages, and infrastructure problems. Before a healthcare system was created, the sick turned to traditional herbal healers for care. South Africa's Zulu healers possess specialized knowledge of local plants and medicine thought to have physical and spiritual healing properties. The country's increasing reliance on Western biomedicine has created a current concern from indigenous medicine conservationists regarding the future of this kind of knowledge. In order to assess the effects of Western medicine on traditional healing practices, I collected data on the various uses of traditional medicine, the frequency in which it is used relative to Western medicine, and how it is maintained in the community. The data identified the various uses and potential problems of Western medicine and Zulu traditional herbal practice in helping the community. The traditional herbal healers revealed close connections between the informational, spiritual, physical, and cultural components of the practice that characterize its livelihood and practice for generations to come. This information allows for a greater understanding of how culture and medicinal knowledge can be entwined together and the positive or negative effects of biomedicine interacting with traditional medicine to help solve sicknesses in not only South Africa, but potentially in our global community.
Title: THE EFFECTS OF WESTERN MEDICINE ON THE LIVELIHOOD OF ZULU TRADITIONAL HERBAL HEALERS IN SOUTH AFRICA.
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Name(s): Bahamonde, Holly, Author
Reyes-Foster, Beatriz, Committee Chair
University of Central Florida, Degree Grantor
Type of Resource: text
Date Issued: 2015
Publisher: University of Central Florida
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: The majority of South African citizens experience inadequate healthcare due to underfunding, mismanagement, staff shortages, and infrastructure problems. Before a healthcare system was created, the sick turned to traditional herbal healers for care. South Africa's Zulu healers possess specialized knowledge of local plants and medicine thought to have physical and spiritual healing properties. The country's increasing reliance on Western biomedicine has created a current concern from indigenous medicine conservationists regarding the future of this kind of knowledge. In order to assess the effects of Western medicine on traditional healing practices, I collected data on the various uses of traditional medicine, the frequency in which it is used relative to Western medicine, and how it is maintained in the community. The data identified the various uses and potential problems of Western medicine and Zulu traditional herbal practice in helping the community. The traditional herbal healers revealed close connections between the informational, spiritual, physical, and cultural components of the practice that characterize its livelihood and practice for generations to come. This information allows for a greater understanding of how culture and medicinal knowledge can be entwined together and the positive or negative effects of biomedicine interacting with traditional medicine to help solve sicknesses in not only South Africa, but potentially in our global community.
Identifier: CFH0004892 (IID), ucf:45419 (fedora)
Note(s): 2015-12-01
B.A.
Sciences, Dept. of Anthropology
Bachelors
This record was generated from author submitted information.
Subject(s): medical anthropology
cultural anthropology
anthropology
traditional healers
herbal
South Africa
Kwa-Zulu Natal
biomedicine
livelihood
western medicine
traditional medicine
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/ucf/fd/CFH0004892
Restrictions on Access: public
Host Institution: UCF

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