Contemporary Aboriginal family structure and Aboriginal women's health

RA Lincoln, Michael Albrecht

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearchpeer-review

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Abstract

This study examines the contemporary nature of Aboriginal family structures and the impact of such forms on the health of their female members. Data are presented on 188 Aboriginal women and 7,511 non-Aboriginal women (in the pre-birth, birthing and post-birth phases) who attended a large metropolitan hospital in Queensland in the mid-1980s. Extensive cross-cultural comparisons and analysis of the constructed variables 'Aboriginal' and 'non-Aboriginal' are undertaken. The study examines a range of questions which include subjective feelings of wellness and illness, objective measures of health, marital status, housing type, domestic living arrangements, income, education, occupation, diet, alcohol and tobacco use, kinship relations and significant others. The study finds significant differences in living arrangements and lifestyle behaviours that lead to comparisons with changes to family structure experienced in other cultural groups (e.g. matrifocal or woman-headed family structures in the West Indies, North and Latin.America). Further, the multivariate nature of the survey and research instruments yields rich information from Aboriginal respondents on both objective and subjective levels that mirrors the holistic approach taken by other anthropologists, epidemiologists and sociologists in the analysis of Aboriginal health status and proposals for the most appropriate avenues for the provision of health care. The various findings provide valuable insights based on empirical data from Aboriginal mothers on family structure and changes in kinship patterns, as well as other variables that directly and indirectly influence their health.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1993
Externally publishedYes
EventPublic Health Association Conference: Seven Years and Counting, Health Beyond 2000 - Sydney, Australia
Duration: 29 Sep 19932 Oct 1993

Conference

ConferencePublic Health Association Conference
CountryAustralia
CitySydney
Period29/09/932/10/93

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