SUMMER READING SALE! 30% off all eBooks until Sept 2nd! Working with Spirit: Experiencing <i>Izangoma</i> Healing in Contemporary South Africa | BERGHAHN BOOKS
Join our Email List Berghahn Books Logo

berghahn New York · Oxford

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Instagram
Working with Spirit: Experiencing <i>Izangoma</i> Healing in Contemporary South Africa

View Table of Contents

Volume 3

Epistemologies of Healing

See Related
Anthropology Journals

Email Newsletters

Sign up for our email newsletters to get customized updates on new Berghahn publications.

Click here to select your preferences

Working with Spirit

Experiencing Izangoma Healing in Contemporary South Africa

Jo Thobeka Wreford

184 pages, 8 ills, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-84545-476-0 $135.00/£99.00 / hb / Published (May 2008)

eISBN 978-0-85745-015-9 eBook

View CartYour country: - edit Buy the eBook from these vendorsRequest a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format)Recommend to your LibraryAvailable in GOBI®




In the current model of health dispensation in South Africa there are two major paradigms, the spirit-inspired tradition of izangoma sinyanga and 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 of izangoma sinyanga may be made comprehensible to academic scientists and applicable to medical interventions. The author discusses white izangoma in the context of current debates on healing and hybridity and insists that there exists a powerful role for izangoma in 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.

Jo Thobeka Wreford accepted a community architectural post in Zimbabwe in 1992, where she met the Xhosa healer with whom, in 2001, she graduated as a sangoma. She now divides her time between her healing practice and research in sangoma and HIV/AIDS at the University of Cape Town. In 2004 she was awarded a Research Scholarship with the AIDS and Society Research Unit (ASRU), Centre for Social Science Research (CSSR) at the University of Cape Town.

Subject: Medical AnthropologyAnthropology of Religion
Area: Africa


Back to Top

Library Recommendation Form

Dear Librarian,

I would like to recommend Working with Spirit Experiencing Izangoma Healing in Contemporary South Africa for the library. Please include it in your next purchasing review with my strong recommendation. The RRP is: $135.00

I recommend this title for the following reasons:

BENEFIT FOR THE LIBRARY: This book will be a valuable addition to the library's collection.

REFERENCE: I will refer to this book for my research/teaching work.

STUDENT REFERRAL: I will regularly refer my students to the book to assist their studies.

OWN AFFILIATION: I am an editor/contributor to this book or another book in the Series (where applicable) and/or on the Editorial Board of the Series, of which this volume is part.