Reading Doctors' Writing
Race, Politics and Power in Indigenous Health Research 1870-1969
By (author) David Piers Thomas
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Reading Doctors' Writing by David Piers Thomas
Book DescriptionThis is an important book for every Australian who reads or writes health research about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The way researchers write about Indigenous peoples in medical journals matters. These representations have influenced the way all Australians -- indigenous and non-Indigenous -- think about Indigenous peoples and their health and illnesses. Repeatedly labelled as an inferior race, many Indigenous peoples' lives have been diminished. Access to good health care was considered only minimally important because most doctors read, wrote and believed that the demise of the Aboriginal race was inevitable. Medical representations of Indigenous people as passive, powerless victims facilitated the denial of their chance to have a say in their own future. The book is not just a story about medical progress. Medical research was influenced by the politics of colonialism -- the nationalist politics associated Federation; and most importantly by the politics of race, racism and anti-racism. This social and political colonial context rendered these past representations of Indigenous people plausible to earlier medical readers but not inevitable. This history of Indigenous health research fuels the suspicion of researchers and research felt by Indigenous people today. The book invites those involved in health research about Indigenous people to confront rather than evade the history and politics of their work. Although not easy, this should lead, ultimately, to better Indigenous health research.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780855754587
(205mm x 270mm x 13mm)
Imprint: Aboriginal Studies Press
Publisher: Aboriginal Studies Press
Publish Date: 1-Jan-2004
Country of Publication: Australia
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Author Biography - David Piers Thomas
David Thomas has worked as a doctor for three Aboriginal community-controlled health services: Danila Dilba, Central Australian Aboriginal Congress and Nganampa Health Council. He has taught public health and researched Indigenous health at Menzies School of Health Research in Alice Springs arid Darwin.
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