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October 2021

''Jesus will fix it after awhile'': meanings and health

Journal/Book: Soc Sci Med. 2000; 50: the Boulevard Langford Lane, Kidlington, Oxford Ox5 1GB, England. Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd. 89-105.

Abstract: There are many myths and stereotypes related to the health of people of color in the United States. Many research studies are done and statistics proliferate on the health status of non-dominant groups. Few studies attempt to understand the meaning systems of poor and working class African American women in relationship to health and health care. This study uses an ethnographic approach including narrative analysis of life history interviews in order to examine how the life experiences and belief systems of a small group of poor and working class African American women from a storefront church in Seattle, Washington, inform and influence the women's opinions and interactions with the dominant white health care system. This paper will examine specific dimensions of the women's belief systems and discuss how these beliefs are applied as the women interpret, confront and examine the meaning of health and the meaning of their own experiences in specific health care encounters. The women's belief systems, learned and reinforced within the context of their daily lives, enable the women to offer a unique critique of the health care system, as well as to maintain a powerful subjectivity in the face of an objectifying system, the dominant white western health care system.

Note: Article Abrums M, Univ Washington, 22011 26th Ave SE, Bothell,WA 98021 USA

Keyword(s): African American; health; racism; narrative analysis; feminism; resistance; CULTURE; AIDS; REFLECTIONS; WOMEN


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