By Mary-Ellen Kelm

Utilizing postmodern and postcolonial conceptions of the physique and the facility family members of colonization, Kelm exhibits how a pluralistic clinical procedure advanced between Canada’s so much populous Aboriginal population.  She explores the impression which Canada’s Indian coverage has had on Aboriginal our bodies and considers how humanitarianism and colonial medication have been used to pathologize Aboriginal our bodies and institute a regime of medical professionals, hospitals, and box matrons, all operating to inspire assimilation.  during this distinctive yet hugely readable ethnohistory, Kelm unearths how Aboriginal humans have been in a position to withstand and change those forces as a way to defend their very own cultural knowing in their our bodies, illness, and drugs.

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Extra info for Colonizing Bodies: Aboriginal Health and Healing in British Columbia, 1900-50

Sample text

The situation troubled Chief William, and he wrote the Department of Indian Affairs: I am an Indian Chief and my people are threatened by starvation. The white men have taken all the land and all the fish. A vast country was ours. It is all gone. The noise of the threshing machine and the wagon has frightened the deer and the beaver. We have nothing to eat. My people are sick. My young men are angry. All the Indians from Canoe Creek to the headwaters of the Fraser say, 'William is an old woman.

But the land and sea were rich and the First Nations adaptive. For, at the same time, new foods and new opportunities presented themselves. Many reserve communities cultivated gardens and took employment, which generated cash to buy imported foods. These new foods tended to be less nutritious than indigenous resources, but they further varied an already complex diet. 2 Through all these changes and adaptations, Aboriginal leadership continuously lobbied to keep control over their land, their resources.

54 The following winter saw the disease affecting students in Lytton when it was accompanied by whooping cough and influenza. 55 Throughout the summer, measles and whooping cough travelled with the people and returned to Lejac with the students in the fall of 1937. 57 By the winter of 1937-8, this outbreak of the disease seems to have died out. Other diseases made more sporadic appearances. Whooping cough characteristically followed measles under some circumstances, and other childhood diseases, like mumps and chicken pox, passed through the residential schools on a regular basis.

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