Dissemination of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Latin America and the Caribbean: the Cases of Peru, Chile, and Cuba

Autora: Patricia Palma (2023)

Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) arrived from China to Latin America and the Caribbean in the 1840s due to the massive migration of Chinese people to the region. In a few years, the press noticed the presence of Chinese herbalists practicing in different cities and countries regardless of the demographic weight of the Chinese community. The fascination with Chinese doctors implicated not only the press but also the literature, a phenomenon particularly observed in Cuba. In the first decades of the 20th century, the reactivation of Chinese immigration to the region fostered an anti-Chinese climate that materialized in more significant migratory restrictions and control of their businesses, such as what happened with Chinese herbalists. These herbalists who practiced inside and outside the Chinese community started to object to criticism and persecution by the conservative press and professional doctors. Despite this, Chinese doctors will continue to maintain their support of a significant number of ill persons. This work seeks to illuminate the historical relevance of TCM in Latin America and the Caribbean, focusing on the cases of Peru, Chile, and Cuba. This last country was far from China culturally and geographically, but as in many other small towns in the region, Chinese medicine presented an alternative to the treatment of illnesses.

Enlace: 10.1097/MC9.0000000000000083

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