The majority of inhabitants have Zapotec Indian origins and practice ancient traditions and medicine. Bernard Fontanille meets healer and midwife Paulina Lopez Morales; she performs "la limpia."
Indigenous culture thrives in the Tlacolula Valley despite many men leaving for the U.S. Morales examines a pregnant woman and explains how she became a midwife. She expresses her fears during deliver and reflects on working with doctors.
Morales and Fontanille catch crickets in the cornfield. Fontanille considers the psychological barrier to eating insects, but likes the meal.
Morales grows medicinal plants and treats patients in her home. She examines a woman experiencing joint pain and uses an egg as a diagnostic tool.
Morales examines the egg test and determines her patient suffers from "susto" in addition to side effects from cortisone. She uses a mix of plants to relieve her symptoms.
Morales greets elders with a hand-kiss; a disappearing tradition. Morales and Fontanille visit the market where Morales purchases items to treat her patients. The Tlacolula Valley is home to several Zapotec communities.
Morales performs a ritual to treat her patient's "susto." She uses the flu as an example to explains "susto."
Credits: Mexico: The Medicine Of The Zapotec Indians—World Medicine
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San Lucas Quiavini is located at the foot of the mountains in the Oaxaca Valley, the most American Indian region of Mexico. A fifth of the population does not speak Spanish, yet Catholic fervor is omnipresent. Bernard Fontanille meets traditional midwife (partera) Paulina whose role includes that of a traditional doctor (curandera) and spiritual healer. Paulina is a Zapotec, one of the country’s major indigenous peoples.
Length: 26 minutes
Copyright date: ©2014
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