Relational Ontologies of Illness, and the Nigerian Sahel

Three people are standing between plants in front of a table, on which there is also a small plant in a top and on which visibly different plant parts and herbs are processed - one sees different species lying around, partly already crushed. Two of the people are standing in the background, one is holding a bowl in his hands. The person in the foreground, apparently responsible for processing the plants and herbs, is smelling a bunch of plants or herbs. In his right hand he holds the tool, perhaps a mortar, which he needs for processing.

I recently gave a talk titled “Relational Ontologies of Illness, and the Nigerian Sahel.” I explored conversations of religious healers with spirits about how, when, and where shifting ecologies of the Sahel are affecting human and spirit movements, and lafiya, a Hausa term for health, well-being and balance. I also suggested ways that human and non-human beings […]