How to understand the simultaneity of parental love and care with a lack of taking action when a child is ill? This question inspired Lianne Holten to conduct the ethnographic study presented in this book. She worked and lived in the isolated village of Farabako (Mali) to help establish a maternity clinic. Holten clearly describes the tension between Western biomedical thinking and local ideas on health. She explains how biomedical assumptions make the mothers' actions appear incomprehensible; but she also shows the logic within the local context. This study contributes to the understanding of the importance of local moralities in health and will be useful for public health initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa.
Lianne Holten is a registered midwife and has a MA in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology from Leiden University (2007). In 2013, she obtained a PhD at the University of Amsterdam.