Diary of an internship with the Papago Indian Agency Bureau of Indian Affairs
KeywordsUnited States. Bureau of Indian Affairs. Papago Agency.
Social service, Rural -- Arizona -- Tohono O'odham Reservation.
Tohono O'odham Reservation (Ariz.)
Tohono O'odham Indians -- Social conditions.
Tohono O'odham Indians -- Education.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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Degree ProgramGraduate College
Degree GrantorUniversity of Arizona
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CURING AMONG THE SAN BLAS KUNA OF PANAMACHAPIN, NORMAN MACPHERSON. (The University of Arizona., 1983)The thesis is an ethnographic account of the belief system surrounding disease and curing among the Kuna Indians of San Blas, Panama. It is an attempt to describe this system in its own terms, and to interpret its meaning by attending to the various symbolic, ritual, and social contexts in which it finds expression. Above all, the ethnography strives to understand Kuna theories of disease causation and cure. Theoretical assumptions and methodological suggestions have been borrowed from the anthropological sub-fields of ethnoscience, symbolic anthropology, and sociolinguistics. The ethnography is loosely organized around the natural progression taken by the Kuna when they discover that someone has fallen ill, diagnose his illness, and then set about devising strategies for restoring him to health. Earlier chapters scrutinize the component parts of this belief system, and these are brought together in a synthetic manner in the penultimate chapter. The ultimate theoretical objective is to demonstrate that cultural symbols can only be properly understood when viewed within the natural context in which they are used. The final chapter deals with cultural and social change in San Blas, with special emphasis on the island of Ustuppu, over the past 70 years.