Date of Award
Sociology and Anthropology
The Bolivian government implemented an intercultural reform in 2006 in an attempt to improve the quality of health for its indigenous citizens throughout the country. One of the biggest focuses thereof was to improve the infant mortality rate, as it has historically far surpassed the rates of other Latin American nations. Though superficial data presented by the government seem to suggest that the intercultural reform has been an unprecedented success, very little extensive research has been done on the topic. My work gauges the merits of the intercultural reform and assesses which areas particularly have been successful. To do so, a mixed methods approach is used. Having traveled to Bolivian clinics and talked to health professionals and mothers, the first half of my work focuses on my ethnographic analysis of my fieldwork while in La Paz and Oruro coupled with content analysis of governmental health brochures and social media accounts. In the second half of my investigation, I analyze datasets presented by the government and non-governmental organizations to contrast the two and ascertain where reality may lie. Though I have discovered that the intercultural reform has doubtlessly had a tremendous impact on the lives of many indigenous children and mother, there persist many municipalities in dire need of assistance, despite the cheery allegations of the Bolivian government.
Crosthwait, Allen G., "Interculturality in Health: The Infant Mortality Rate of Bolivia" (2018). Honors Theses. 43.