• cassandraosterloh

Curandero: A Life in Mexican Folk Healing

Torres, Eliseo "Cheo", with Timothy L. Sawyer, Jr. Curandero: A Life in Mexican Folk Healing. Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press, 2015.


The book is a narrative of personal experiences with folk healing and recollections of a childhood filled with lessons on the properties of healing herbs and practices. Torres connects these early years with his research into curanderismo.

I particularly enjoyed the chapters on well-known curanderos both north and south of the border, as well as their recipes for various aliments and conditions. There was a sense people appreciated that the whole person was being treated, including the intangible parts of the person. The belief that a curandera, so revered in the community could in effect "give you permission" to remedy your own ills, shows the intertwining of faith, nature, and community as a powerful force in this healing practice. The book does a good job of relating Mexican, New Mexican and Mesoamerican traditions of folk healing both from the past and modern day practices.

Review by Anna Uremovich, Archivist, History and Literary Arts, NHCC

Available at NHCC Library RZ407 .T67 2005

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