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Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness

A panel from the exhibit, “Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness,” which is now open (thru October 24) in the Humanities, Social Science, and Education (HSSE) Library’s Periodical Reading Room (room 135).

The Purdue University Libraries, in partnership with the Native American Educational and Cultural Center (NAECC) at Purdue, is hosting the traveling exhibition “Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness.” The exhibit was developed by the American Library Association (ALA) and the National Library of Medicine (NLM), and it focuses on the interconnectedness of wellness, illness, and cultural life for Native Americans, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians.

The exhibition will be on display in the Humanities, Social Science, and Education (HSSE) Library from Friday, Sept. 14-Wednesday, Oct. 24 in the Periodical Reading Room (first floor) and is open during the HSSE Library’s hours. The exhibition is free and open to the public.

The U.S. NLM developed and produced the exhibit, and the ALA Public Programs Office, in partnership with NLM, lends the exhibit to libraries across the U.S. Ann O’Donnell, library assistant, applied to host the exhibit in 2015, and she was notified the same year that Purdue Libraries was selected as a host site. Purdue Libraries is only one of the two locations in Indiana that will run the “Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness.”

A series of programs will supplement the exhibition, with the kickoff opening event featuring Terese Marie Mailhot, author of the 2018 New York Times’ best-seller, “Heart Berries: A Memoir.” Mailhot, who is currently a Tecumseh Postdoctoral Fellow at Purdue University and serves as a faculty member at the Institute of American Indian Arts, will deliver “Heart Berries: A Reading with the Author” beginning at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 20 in the HSSE Library, room 142.

The series will also include Purdue faculty presentations and a screening of the documentary, “Don’t Get Sick After June: American Indian Healthcare.”

Details for each program in the series are listed below.

About “Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness”

The traveling exhibition includes six informative panels that feature stories drawn from both the past and the present, exploring how the determinants of health for Native People are tied to community, the land, and spirit. Each panel also has interactive iPads to complement and enhance the banners. The content in “Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness” provides a robust selection of videos, imagery, and personal stories that delve into several themes, including the impact of epidemics, federal legislation, the loss of land, and the inhibition of culture on the health of Native individuals and communities today.

For more information, contact O’Donnell at atodonne@purdue.edu or at (765) 494-9844.