Textiles of Healing: Native American AIDS Quilts
Author: Carocci, Max
Source: Textile: The Journal of Cloth and Culture, 1 March 2010, vol. 8, no. 1, pp. 68-85(18)
Abstract:Around the world responses to AIDS and HIV are expressed in material form through idioms mediated by particular social and historical contingencies. In this article I examine at the case of AIDS memorial quilts produced by contemporary Native Americans. The invisible connections between people, their histories, and cultures that are materialized in this particular form of textiles make them culturally significant vehicles for healing practices for many Native Americans, who maintain that the acknowledgment of customary meanings ensures ritual efficacy and curing success. As a particular response to AIDS, grief, death, and healing these objects reveal the social relevance of expressing materially culturally encoded messages that are simultaneously rooted in universally shared idioms and the uniqueness of local experiences.
Document Type: Research Article