A Study of Otjiwarongo District (South West Africa) by O. Köhler

By O. Köhler

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As a dialectical process, struggles for health connect the necessity of meeting immediate needs and INTRODUCTION 15 healing with long-term, broadscale organizing efforts to create healthier, freer, and socially just relations and spaces for living. Thus, I define health as individual and collective bodily self-determination. I use the term body politics rather than the narrower term health politics to signal the limits of dominant health discourses for fully capturing the meanings of embodied freedom.

43 As Donald Parson details in Making a Better World, a wide range of civic, religious, women’s, and veterans groups pushed the city, state, and federal government for housing construction. Racially liberal housing reformers used the language of “slums” to argue that the poor social status of African Americans was due to the unhealthy environments in which they were forced to live. Clearing the slums would promote racial uplift and healthy living for the entire city. Housing reformers and organized labor also saw the opportunity for a more democratically constructed postwar city.

79 Some twenty doctors and dentists signed a letter to Mayor Bowron denouncing the “Klan terror” in Los Angeles and urging him to investigate. 81 The Los Angeles Times’s coverage of pressure to desegregate health care in the mid-1960s echoed the myths of racial equality that painted civil rights demands as uniquely Southern. In August 1963 the National Medical Association gathered in Los Angeles for its annual meeting.

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