The Hut-Hospital as Project and as Practice

Mimeses, Alterities, and Colonial Hierarchies

in Social Analysis
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Abstract

This article analyzes one kind of colonial equipment designed in the early twentieth century for the purpose of providing medical assistance to the indigenous populations of Angola and Mozambique. I will refer to it as a ‘hut-hospital’, although it had several forms and designations. The layout of hut-hospitals consisted of a main building and a number of hut-like units that were supposedly more attractive to the indigenous population and therefore more efficient than the large, rectangular buildings of the main colonial hospitals. Using different sources, including three-dimensional plaster models of hut-hospitals, photographs, legal documents, and 1920s conference papers and articles, I will investigate the relatively obscure history of this colonial artifact while exploring the use of imitation as part of the repertoire of colonial governance.

Contributor Notes

Cristiana Bastos is an anthropologist at the Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon. She has conducted research in medical anthropology, the social history of medicine, and migration and colonialism. She is currently leading a large-scale European Research Council project, “The Colour of Labour: The Racialized Lives of Migrants.” Her publications include Global Responses to AIDS (1999), Trânsitos Coloniais (2002), Clínica, Arte e Sociedade (2011), A Circulação do Conhecimento (2013), Healing Holidays (2015), and articles in the Journal of Southern African Studies, International Migration, Bulletin of the History of Medicine, Anthropology and Medicine, Medical Anthropology, and History and Anthropology, among others. E-mail: cristiana.bastos@ics.ulisboa.pt

Social Analysis

The International Journal of Anthropology

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