BOOK REVIEW: SECRETS OF MARSHALLESE MEDICINES UNVEILED

BOOK LAUNCH

Traditional Medicine in the Marshall Islands: The Women, the Plants, the Treatments Publisher: Institute of Pacific Studies USP By Irene J. Taafaki, Maria Kabua Fowler and Randolph R. Thaman Soft cover; 300 pages; $30 Date Published: 2006

SECRETS OF MARSHALLESE MEDICINES UNVEILED

A book describing plants used for medicine in the Marshall Islands was launched today at a bookstore in Honolulu by authors Irene J. Taafaki, Maria Kabua Fowler and Randolph R. Thaman.

Their book, "Traditional Medicine in the Marshall Islands: The Women, the Plants, the Treatments," reveals some of the closely guarded secrets of Marshallese healers which until now have only been passed down orally and kept within clans.

The book focuses on Marshallese medicinal knowledge for the treatment of women.

The Institute of Pacific Studies, part of the University of the South Pacific, published the full-color, illustrated guide to 270 traditional medicinal treatments.

Over thousands of years, the people of the Marshall Islands have lived on small remote coral atolls and islands in the Central Pacific, using limited plant resources for food, medicine and shelter.

According to the authors, until now, uses of the plants for medicine were known to only a few.

Nine expert healers and other contributors shared their extensive knowledge, "so the wisdom of ages can be preserved for the benefit of future generations."

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