This paper seeks to understand the outbreaks and the development of grisi siknis , a form of mass spirit possession among the Miskitu of. Miskito villages line the Atlantic coasts of Nicaragua and Honduras. Nietschmann ( 47) estimated the number of Miskito speakers in Nicaragua at in. Grisi siknis (which literally means “crazy sickness”), is characterized by long periods of anxiety, dizziness, fear, and irrational anger. The most.

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Culture, Illness, and Healing. The paper argues that the phenomenon should no longer be considered a ‘culture-bound condition’ but in fact a Miskitu version of involuntary mass spirit possession. In all cases, the patients have the same symptoms: Austin, TXUnited States: Toronto, OntarioCanada: Culture is something that I feel makes us very unique depending on where we come from and the traditions and beliefs we choose to follow.

This illness sounds like the people are experiencing hallucinations, a bit of dementia, and having mental breakdowns. I think that in others cultures this condition could be called a nervous breakdown because it has all the similar symptoms.

You must be logged in wiknis post a comment. Most commonly the illness is found to strike women but is known to ransack through entire villages.

Nicaragua village in grip of madness

Westport, CTUnited States: Although grisi siknis behaves like a virus, researchers have not been able to trace anything irregular in the blood samples of victims. Then moving onto Miskito healers many of the victims were reported to being healed 15 to 30 days later, using the ancient rituals of the native healers.


Grisi Siknis Among the Miskito”. I agree with the fact that illness does not only involve the interruption of your physical health but also your mental sinkis. In the news article Widdicombe they explain that 60 people of the remote jungle tribe in Nicaragua known as the Miskito. CS1 Spanish-language sources es Use dmy dates from January Richard Castillo, as quoted by Dr.

Nicaragua village in grip of madness | World news | The Guardian

Washington, DCUnited States: Grisi Siknis is a very prevalent illness for the people of the Miskito tribe. I believe culture is the sharing of beliefs and values within a group of people. Retrieved from ” https: Cases of grisi siknis were registered in Nicaragua in March in Puerto Cabezas and Siuna where many students of the National Institute of Technology and other schools, suffered attacks. Traditional Miskito belief, says Dennis, holds that grisi siknis is the result of evil spirits or black sorcerers.

Retrieved 20 March This page was last edited on 20 Mayat Some scholars in the country conclude that it is due to the extreme poverty that the Miskito people endure and that was worsened by Hurricane Felix of September Mr Alvarado said a medical report carried out in the late s after a similar outbreak concluded that deliberate contamination of wells was one possible cause.

More recently cases occurring amongst people of Spanish descent have also been reported. In the Western culture, it would probably be treated as one of the above illnesses. This is a disputed fact, as not all cases involve sexual encounters. The Miskito people argued that it was due to the action of black sorcerers to oblige the people to pay the expensive cures.


I believe culture is a way for people to identify with other people that they can relate to.

Further research that seeks to understand other forms of involuntary grrisi spirit possession should emphasize the social, personal and environmental context as well as cross-cultural comparisons in order to encompass fully the role of culture in relation to illness and suffering. Mr Taylor is one of five healers sent to Raiti, where 25 of the 60 sufferers are said to be responding well to treatment.

Grisi Siknis in Nicaragua | ANP Introduction to Medical Anthropology (Summer )

She fled across the Coco river into Honduras, reaching the village of Panzap where she died. Even though it sinis not clear why or how the illness exactly comes about, it is clear that it is attacking a certain location and group of people.

Thus western trained doctors were left to only aid and support the healers because of their effectiveness with the illness.