Kristen Herlosky

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Nevada, Las Vegas, U. of

Grant number

Gr. 10118

Approve Date

April 8, 2021

Project Title

Herlosky, Kristen (Nevada, Las Vegas, U. of) "Maternal health in the context of social, political, and economic change among transitioning Hadza foragers of Tanzania"

In Tanzania, maternal deaths are attributed to complications during pregnancy and childbirth and the limited access and poor timing of life-saving treatment. Indigenous women tend to suffer from greater social, political, and economic disparities and inequalities, and have poorer health indicators and maternal health outcomes, overall, compared to their non-Indigenous counterparts. Although policy initiatives have been established to improve these health outcomes and increase access to biomedical health care and facilities for birth, few studies have investigated how these policies impact rural and Indigenous populations, including Hadza foragers in Northern Tanzania. The proposed project will utilize pilot data collected in 2016-17 on Hadza women’s childbirth and postpartum practices and experiences to inform the proposed study. Here, I take a critical medical anthropological (CMA) perspective that will interrogate: (1) temporal changes in birth and postpartum practices over sixty years of social, political, and ecological change, and (2) evaluate the relationship between Hadza mothers and the Nation-State (e.g. health care policy initiatives, health care worker interactions). The resultant data will contribute to expanding our woefully limited understanding of hunter-gatherer women’s subjective reproductive experiences as well as act to inform our understanding of how policy initiatives impact Indigenous communities under transition.