Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964623 | Print ISBN: 9781412936361 | Online ISBN: 9781412964623| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Dogon Religion and Science
What is known of indigenous Dogon scientific knowledge is based primarily on the studies of French anthropologists Marcel Griaule and Germaine Dieterlen, which were conducted from 1931 until the death of Marcel Griaule in 1956. Griaule and Dieterlen described the Dogon as careful observers of the material world around them and as a thoughtful people who have derived sophisticated explanations for the many manifestations of nature that are in evidence in their daily life. The Dogon have amassed a considerable body of correct knowledge pertaining to anatomy and human physiology, and to the relationships between and interactions among the various organs of the body. Commensurate with this knowledge, and supported by their significant skill with plants and herbs, they have also evolved an effective native pharmacology. This entry looks at that knowledge and its interconnection with Dogon religious belief. The Dogon are farmers who demonstrate a facile understanding of agriculture, ...