Dalitso Mvula deposited AN INVESTIGATION OF THE ACQUISITION, TRANSFER AND PRESERVATION OF INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE BY TRADITIONAL HEALERS IN CHIBOMBO DISTRICT OF ZAMBIA on Humanities Commons 4 months ago
Indigenous Knowledge on healing is in danger of diminishing because of modern medical facilities and yet there are inadequate efforts from national and organizational institutions to capture this knowledge. Therefore, this study aimed at investigating the acquisition, transfer and preservation of Indigenous Knowledge by traditional healers in Chibombo District. This was achieved by firstly exploring how traditional healers acquired Indigenous Medical Knowledge. Secondly, by identifying the methods used during IMK transfer. Thirdly, identifying the methods which were used by traditional healers to preserve IMK and fourthly, through investigating the challenges which were associated with acquisition, transfer and preservation of medical knowledge. Using qualitative research method and snowball sampling, primary data were collected from 29 traditional healers and 5 key informants through face-to-face interviews. Findings of the study revealed that traditional healers acquired knowledge of healing through training and ancestral calling. The study also established that the majority of trained healers were females as they were much more willing to be trained than males. Findings on IK transfer revealed that majority of traditional healers transferred IK on healing through demonstration and observation. Findings on knowledge preservation showed that majority of traditional healers were training their family and other interested individuals. Results on challenges during acquisition, transfer and preservation of IK revealed that would-be healers experienced sickness, difficulties in mastering what was demonstrated and observed, segregation from their known communities and panicking when patients showed no signs of recovering after administering the herbs to them. The need for community leaders in Chibombo district to consider educating the local youths during ceremonial gatherings on the need to acquire and preserve indigenous practices was recommended.