This essay offers the Spanish Caribbean as a showcase for the central role black Atlantic healers and their culture played in shaping the Atlantic world of knowledge production about the body and the natural world during the seventeenth century. The author examines how historiographical traditions deeply ingrained in the rise of the fields of medical history and black Atlantic studies have created distorting, and seemingly unconnected, narratives around medicine and corporeality. Arguing that black understandings about health, disease, and healing practices were not only widely circulated and adopted by Caribbean communities but also integral to the development of the novel, incorporative Atlantic healing culture that appeared in the seventeenth century, the author also proposes a model to reconcile the seemingly unrelated historiographies and epistemologies of medical history and black healing practices in the Caribbean.
Skip Nav Destination
Pablo F. Gómez; Incommensurable Epistemologies? The Atlantic Geography of Healing in the Early Modern Caribbean. Small Axe 1 July 2014; 18 (2 (44)): 95–107. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/07990537-2739875
Download citation file: