Religion und Heilkunst der Toba-Batak auf Sumatra. Überliefert von Johannes Winkler (1874-1958)
(InterCultura 6/7)
Köln: Köppe Verlag 2006
453 pp., 1 map, 29.80; ISBN 3-89645-445-4
Keywords: mission and medicine, medicine and mission, Winkler, J., Rheinische Missionsgesellschaft, Batak and mission, Christian mission, traditional healing and biomedicine

Religion and healing of the Toba Batak of Sumatra. Handed down by Johannes Winkler (1874-1958)
This volume includes the new edition of Winkler"s book "Die Toba-Batak auf Sumatra in gesunden und kranken Tagen", published in 1925, and other texts by Winkler, the missionary physician belonging to the Protestant mission of the "Rheinische Missionsgesellschaft", as well as photographs owned by his family. The editors want to contribute to the present debate on western medicine and traditional healing because western doctors encountered indigenous cultures in many forms, which resulted in (pre-conceived) generalizations about indigenous cultures about: "heathenism", superstition, ineffective diagnosis and treatment, and quack medicine, added by the attitude of potential superiority of Christianity and western medicine. So, traditional healers were, in the first phase, frequently seen as phenomena of the "Antichrist". In later years the accounts of indigenous culture became more qualified. Winkler"s other texts deal with midwifery, village life, Beriberi, the beginnings of medical mission, music of the Batak, the Batak script, the Usir game, the 6000-year calendar, and the book has maps, a list of Winkler"s publications, and a list of ethnographic artifacts.