Indigenous medicine, health and healing: Foregrounding First Nations peoples' voices
Ms Monica CroninZoom
Health within Indigenous communities in Australia and New Zealand is understood as not only the care and management of the physical manifestations of illness but the social, spiritual, emotional and ecological wellbeing of individuals and their communities.
These practices are diverse, complex and understood as holistic, cyclical care, and are maintained through the generational transmission of knowledge to people, places and objects.
In collaboration with First Nations curators and communities, the Geoffrey Kaye Museum of Anaesthetic History has developed an exhibition exploring medicinal care and healing practices of Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, Māori and Pacific peoples.
The Museum is part of the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists, and is the largest and most diverse collection of its kind. This exhibition forms a huge departure from the usual format, foregrounding and celebrating the agency of Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, Māori and Pacific Peoples to transmit, sustain and affirm their cultural practices associated with medicine.
By recognising and valuing both the visible and invisible modes of care, the exhibition invites the viewer to contemplate ways in which Indigenous concepts of health and healing run parallel to contemporary medical practice and highlight opportunities for it to be used in partnership.