Modernizing Medicine in Zimbabwe

HIV/AIDS and Traditional Healers

David Simmons



As sub-Saharan Africa continues to confront the runaway epidemic of HIV/AIDS, traditional healers have been tapped as collaborators in prevention and education efforts. The terms of this collaboration, however, are far from settled and continually contested. As Modernizing Medicine in Zimbabwe demonstrates, serious questions continue to linger in the medical community since the explosion of the disease nearly thirty years ago. Are healers obstacles to health development? Do their explanations for the disease disregard biomedical science? Can the worlds of traditional healing and modern medicine coexist and cooperate?


Modernizing Medicine in Zimbabwe is an eye-opening book that details the historical roots of the cultural and political response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic in Zimbabwe. - Janis Hutchinson


David Simmons is an associate professor with a dual position in the Department of Anthropology and the Department of Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior at the University of South Carolina.