The destruction that accompanied the Indonesian withdrawal from East Timor in 1999 included the collapse of state-sponsored health services. As the new national government slowly reintroduces biomedical and other social services across the country, local forms of customary healing and traditional health-seeking practices are flourishing in the spaces created between the intention and delivery of state-based health care. Customary and biomedical approaches to healing are sometimes considered incommensurate fields of practice with fundamentally different orientations. However, as this paper argues, the two approaches are better understood as complementary and mutually reinforcing in a post-conflict environment where Timorese are struggling to rebuild their lives following years of dislocation and militarized repression. The paper focuses on the Fataluku-speaking community of far eastern Timor.
|Journal||Ethnos: Journal of Anthropology|
|Publication status||Published - 2008|