The pragmatics behind the medical and health knowledge in Alor : an understanding of how disease is conceptualized in the Abui language
Chan, Wan Ting
Date of Issue2016-03-08
School of Humanities and Social Sciences
Metaphors shape how we think and conceptualize abstract ideas. Disease conceptualization is a form of abstract thought that is shaped by metaphors and descriptive language. Developed societies and indigenous societies tend to differ in understanding disease and transmission processes, due to differences in metaphorical language use, cultural and belief systems, which are reflected in how the disease is conceptualized. This paper investigates how such differences impact the health seeking behaviour of the Abui society, and hopes to inform efforts to better bridge the differences between developed and indigenous disease concepts. The Abui society conceptualize with the metaphors DISEASE IS AN UNWELCOME GUEST and DISEASE IS A PUNISHER. This belief also shows that they perceive disease as a personalistic agent, leading to personalistic responses to disease. This personalistic system is elaborated in a case study of Takaya, the Abui name for cerebral malaria.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University