Shirley Lindenbaum is Professor Emerita of Anthropology at the CUNY-Graduate Center, New York.
This updated edition of Lindenbaum's classic, Kuru Sorcery, is a richly woven account of the multiple dimensions of the Kuru epidemic: the perspectives of the Fore who are so devastated by the scourge; the unfolding scientific understanding of its origin; the transformation of the Fore economy, religious rituals, and social life; and the motley cast of outsiders-missionaries, anthropologists, biomedical scientists, colonial administrators-whose presence in one way or another illuminated its causes and contributed to its end. Rarely has the long-term follow up of an ethnographic study produced so comprehensive and compelling a picture of the interplay of history, globalization, colonialism, and science. Foremost of its accomplishments is that we hear the voices, listen to the understandings, and vividly see the lived experience of the Fore themselves. -Arthur Kleinman, Harvard University A founding charter for medical anthropology, Kuru Sorcery remains a model for anyone seeking to disentangle the complex and sticky relations of culture and disease. Proving that kuru is still good to think with, this new edition, based on Lindenbaum's long-term engagement with the Fore people, reveals fresh insights into global biomedicine and human suffering. -Warwick Anderson, author of The Collectors of Lost Souls: Turning Kuru Scientists into Whitemen Kuru Sorcery is an extraordinary ethnographic resource for teaching global health and applied anthropology and encouraging interdisciplinary approaches to address complex health challenges. Dr. Lindenbaum shares her methodological approach as an anthropologist to investigate the relationship between culture and health and demonstrates the value of this approach to medical and health sciences. The book underscores the importance of cultural competency by working with local culture and including the people in the search to understand and improve their own health. -Michael W. Diamond, Northwestern University