Dr. Louise Jilek-Aall recounts in vivid detail her experiences as a bush doctor in Tanzania in 1959. Her poignant stories recount her frustration and helplessness in the face of cultural superstitions and the suspicions of the medicine men, her joy as she learned the language and came to understand the people, but also heartbreak when sometimes there was nothing she could do to help. The admiration and love she came to feel for these people and this place resonates throughout this remarkable book.
Dr Jilek-Aall's discovery of outcasts in the Mahenge mountains who suffered from kifafa, a severe form of epilepsy, spurred her to found a clinic to treat these patients and to educate their families and others about the disease. As a result, epilepsy sufferers were able to return to their homes and be accepted into their communities.
Fifty years later, Dr. Jilek-Aall still works to support the clinic and to initiate research into the causes of this prevalent disease.
'Reading through the chapters is like looking through a shifting kaleidoscope; each chapter throws up a distinctive. Jewel-like image of her remarkably variegated experience. This is a very readable and thoroughly honest book. It is highly recommended. - Professor Raimond Prince, MD, McGill University.