Social & Cultural Anthropology

Showing 1-2 of 2 items.

Healing with Plants in the American and Mexican West

University of Arizona Press

Disenchanted with biomedicine and dismayed by its cost, increasing numbers of people are seeking alternative therapies such as the healing plants discussed in this book. Plant medicine is a billion-dollar business: health food stores, small yerberias, and even giant grocery store chains carry hundreds of medicinal herbs. By one estimate, up to one-third of the U.S. population uses alternative medicine—generally in addition to conventional therapy and commonly without telling their doctors.

The heart of this volume is a complete description of 100 plants commonly used today, often for the same purposes reported by chroniclers of the Aztecs or eighteenth-century European explorers. Information for each plant includes botanical and common plant names, history, contemporary uses, a description of how the plant is prepared and administered, and brief phytochemical data. Discussions of folk efficacy and folk properties—beliefs in how and why the herb heals—help to explain the continued use of each plant into the present day.

Are any of these plants dangerous, and do any of them really work? Where did they come from, and where are they available now? How can health-care practitioners gain the confidence of their patients to learn whether they are using alternative medicines for specific illnesses, symptoms, or injuries? Perhaps most intriguing, which of these plants might be waiting to take the place of known antibiotics as pathological organisms become increasingly resistant to modern miracle drugs? Answers to these and other questions will pique the interest of general readers and will be an invaluable resource for health-care providers—especially nurses and other primary-care providers, who often must find an interface between biomedical and more traditional therapies. For all readers, the book opens a window into many ethnic cultures of the region—Mexican American communities, desert Pima, coastal Seri, and others. Here is the fascinating saga of how their healing plants from prehistoric times melded with Old World herbs brought by the Europeans to create the unique pharmacopoeia available today here and in other parts of the world.

Plants included:

Acacia (Cassie, Acacia)

Achillea (Yarrow)

Agastache (Giant Hyssop)

Agave (Century Plant)

Allium (Garlic, Onion)

Aloe (Aloe)

Ambrosia (Ragweed)

Anemopsis (Yerba Mansa)

Arctostaphylos (Bearberry, Uva Ursi)

Argemone (Prickly Poppy)

Aristolochia (Bithwort, Snakeroot)

Arracacia (Arracacha)

Artemisia (Wormwood, Mugwort, Western Mugwort, Sagebrush)

Asclepias (Milkweed)

Baccharis (Desert Broom, Seep Willow)

Bocconia (Tree Celandine)

Buddleia (Butterfly Bush)

Bursera (Elephant Tree)

Caesalpinia (Mexican Bird-of-Paradise)

Cannabis (Marijuana)

Capsicum (Chili)

Carnegiea (Saguaro)

Casimiroa (Zapote)

Cassia (Senna)

Cereus (Cactus)

Chenopodium (Goosefoot, Wormseed)

Citrus (Lemon, Lime, Orange)

Datura (Jimson Weed)

Ephedra (Mormon Tea)

Equisetum (Horsetail)

Eryngium (Eryngo, Button Snakeroot)

Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus)

Euphorbia (Spurge)

Eysenhardtia (Kidneywood)

Gnaphalium (Everlasting, Cudweed)

Guaiacum (Lignum Vitae)

Guazuma (Guazuma)

Gutierrezia (Turpentine Bush)

Haematoxylon (Logwood)

Haplopappus (Jimmyweed)

Heterotheca (Telegraph Plant, Falso Arnica)

Hintonia (Copalqu¡n)

Ibervillea (Coyote Melon)

Jacquinia (Jacquinia)

Jatropha (Limberbush)

Juniperus (Juniper)

Karwinskia (Coffeeberry)

Kohleria (Tree Gloxinia)

Krameria (Ratany)

Lantana (Lantana)

Larrea (Creosote Bush, Greasewood)

Ligusticum (Lovage)

Lippia (Oregano)

Lysiloma (Featherbush)

Malva (Mallow)

Mammillaria (Pincushion Cactus)

Mascagnia (Mascagnia)

Matricaria (Chamomile)

Mentha (Mint)

Nicotiana (Tobacco)

Ocimum (Basil)

Opuntia (Cholla, Prickly Pear)

Perezia (Perezia)

Persea (Avocado)

Phaseolus (Bean)

Phoradendron, Struthanthus, Loranthus (Mistletoe)

Physalis (Tomatillo)

Pinus (Pine)

Pithecellobium (Monkey Pod)

Plantago (Plantain)

Plumeria (Frangipani)

Populus (Cottonwood, Poplar)

Porophyllum (Odora)

Prosopis (Mesquite)

Psacalium (Indian-Plantain)

Punica (Pomegranate)

Quercus (Oak)

Randia (Randia)

Rhynchosia (Rosary Bean)

Ricinus (Castor Bean)

Rosa (Rose)

Rosmarinus (Rosemary)

Ruellia (Ruellia)

Rumex (Dock, Sorrel)

Ruta (Rue)

Salix (Willow)

Salvia (Sage)

Sambucus (Elder)

Senecio (Ragwort, Groundsel)

Simmondsia (Jojoba)

Smilax (Sarsaparilla)

Solanum (Nightshade, Horsenettle, Potato)

Sphaeralcea (Globe Mallow)

Tagetes (Marigold)

Tecoma (Trumpet Bush)

Turnera (Damiana)

Valeriana (Valerian, Garden Heliotrope)

Vallesia (Vallesia)

Zea mays (Corn, Maize)

Zexmenia (Zexmenia)

Zornia (Snakeweed)

More info...


University of Arizona Press

"Centered upon contemporary daily life in a small village on the shores of Lake Atitlan, Guatemala, Campesino illustrates the complex interrelationships among local, national, and international events. Written in a simple and readable style, the diary will be valuable not only for anthropology students, but for anyone interested in contemporary Guatemala and Central America."--Choice

"One of the most interesting books written about the Maya Indians of Guatemala, this fascinating work is unique in the sense that it is written in the form of a biography and presents the views of how all these conflicts affects those at the bottom. . . . This is a book that anyone interested in ethnic studies and in humanity in general should read."--Explorations in Sights and Sounds

"This volume is an instant classic."--Latin America in Books

"Prof. Sexton is to be highly recommended of another excellent work which will be very useful to scholars and lay readers truly interested in the life and struggles of the Indian peoples."--Latin American Indian Literatures Journal

More info...
Find what you’re looking for...
Stay Informed

Receive the latest UBC Press news, including events, catalogues, and announcements.

Read past newsletters
Current Catalogue
Catalogue Cover   Spring 2018 CDN
Publishers Represented
UBC Press is the Canadian agent for several international publishers. Visit our Publishers Represented page to learn more.