Hallowell, A. Irving (Alfred Irving), 1892-1974. Ojibwa world view and disease

Table of Contents

Publication Information

Paragraph Subjects (OCM)

Publication Information


Title: Ojibwa world view and disease

Published in: Contributions to anthropology : selected papers of A. Irving Hallowell

Published By: Contributions to anthropology : selected papers of A. Irving Hallowell Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1976. 391-448 p.

By line: [A. Irving Hallowell]

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: HRAF, 2000. Computer File

Culture: Ojibwa (NG06)

Subjects: Gift giving (431); Ethics (577); Theory of disease (753); Magical and mental therapy (755); Spirits and gods (776); Avoidance and taboo (784); Ethnometeorology (821); Ethnopsychology (828);

Abstract: In this article Hallowell discusses the relationship among Ojibwa cognition, etiology, and values. He criticizes the natural/supernatural dichotomy when applied to the Ojibwa world view. The Ojibwa, he argues, do not see the world so divided, but regard 'supernatural beings,' such as the Grandfathers or wind spirits, as having a real in-this-world ontological status and he refers to these spirits as 'other-than-human-persons.' Persons have a reciprocal relationship with these 'other-than-human-persons,' in which curing and protective power is exchanged for maintaining certain personal taboos. Hallowell argues that these personal taboos have a general disciplining effect, which guides Ojibwa social life. Disease is considered the consequence of transgressing Ojibwa 'equalitarian' values. In this regard, Hallowell sees Ojibwa understanding of disease causality as a social sanction that reinforces their moral codes and behavior.

Document Number: 77

Document ID: ng06-077

Document Type: Essay

Language: English

Note: Includes bibliographical references (p. 445-448)

Field Date: 1930-1940

Evaluation: Ethnographer-4,5

Analyst: Ian Skoggard ;1998

Coverage Date: 1930-1940

Coverage Place: Berens River, Manitoba, Canada

LCSH: Ojibwa Indians


Copy and paste a formatted citation or use one of the links below to export the citation to your chosen bibliographic manager.

Export a Citation