UA Professor Writes Textbook On Traditional Indian Medicine

Published: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 3:50pm
Updated: Tuesday, February 14, 2017 - 3:56pm

Long before there were medical schools and residency programs, there were traditional ways of healing people in Native communities across the country through ceremonies and herbs.

Patrisia Gonzales teaches these practices — and the cultural underpinnings of them — at the University of Arizona in Tucson.

But through all of her years of teaching, there has never been a textbook she could use. So she wrote one. “Traditional Indian Medicine: American Indian Wellness” gathers writing from mostly Native authors and attempts to explain the cultures and traditions of medicine people.

Gonzales is an herbalist, a traditional birth attendant and a promotora. I spoke with her more about her new book and these practices recently, and I asked her what exactly all of that means.

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