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Aboriginal Health &
Cultural Diversity Glossary

D – Definitions

Declaration of Alma-Ata, 1978
“On September 12, 1978, at Alma-Ata in Soviet Kazakhstan, representatives of 134 nations agreed to the terms of a solemn Declaration pledging urgent action by all governments, all health and development workers, and the world community to protect and promote the health of all people of the world. This international conference urged other international organizations, agencies, non-governmental organizations, funding agencies, all health workers and the whole world community to support national and international commitment to primary health care and to channel increased technical and financial support to it” (World Health Organization, 1978).

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Declaration of Independence:
“The Declaration of Independence of the Thirteen Colonies In CONGRESS, July 4, 1776: On July 2, 1776, in Philadelphia, the Continental Congress adopted the resolution, introduced by Richard Henry Lee and John Adams, which actually declared independence from Great Britain. [It declared, in part, ``that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent states, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.'' The Declaration, which explained why the Colonies (now States) declared their independence, was adopted by the Continental Congress July 4, 1776. The leading draftsman was Thomas Jefferson, assisted by John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Robert R. Livingston, and Roger Sherman]” (Henderson, 2001).

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deculturalize:
"As a result of residential schools many children became 'deculturized,' losing both their ability to be culturally 'Indian' and the ability to provide good parental role models to their own children" (Waldram, Herring, & Young, 1995, p. 16).
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demographics:

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denigrate:
“disparage, pour scorn on, put down, degrade” (Thesaurus, 2003).
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Department of Indian Affairs, 1868:
“The Department of Indian Affairs established its administrative structure in 1868. With its assimilative policies, legislation was passed which decreed that Indian status could only be passed through the male line” (Aboriginal Women, Industry Canada, 2003).
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Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development:

Department of National Health and Welfare Act:

Department of Northern Affairs and National Resources:

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deprecate:
“Denounce, deplore, condemn, disapprove, denigrate” (Thesaurus, 2003).

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diabetes mellitus:
“The medical community defines diabetes mellitus as an endocrine disorder “characterized by chronic hyperglycemia and disturbances of carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism. Two major types of diabetes mellitus exist: type I and type II” (Kinney, Dunbar, Brooks-Brunn, Molter & Vitello-Cicciu, 1998, p. 849).

diabetes mellitus:
“Diabetes Mellitus is defined as two types of a highly variable disorder in which abnormalities in the ability to make and/or use the hormone insulin interfere with the process of turning dietary carbohydrates into glucose, the body's fuel. Type I is known as insulin dependent diabetes mellitus, and type II is known as non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus” (National Human Research Genome Institute, 2003).

diabetes mellitus “gestational”:
“Gestational diabetes develops during pregnancy. Glucose levels may return to normal, remain high, or progress to diabetes after pregnancy. The onset is in “2% of all pregnancies, 60% will develop diabetes within 15 years of gestation” (Mosby’s Medical, Nursing and Allied Health Dictionary, 1998, p. 477).

diabetes “Type 1 diabetes”
or “Insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus”:

“Type 1 diabetes is diagnosed when the pancreas is not able to produce insulin to regulate the metabolism of glucose and other processes needed in the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins in the blood (Mosby’s Medical, Nursing and Allied Health Dictionary, 1998). These individuals are required to take insulin injections daily aided by blood glucose level and dietary intake monitoring. The onset of type 1 diabetes is seen in children around the age of puberty. “It affects about one out if every ten people with diabetes” (Canadian Health Network, 2000).

diabetes “Type I”:
”Type I diabetes occurs when the pancreas no longer produces insulin. Approximately 10 percent of people with diabetes have Type I diabetes” (Canadian Diabetes Association, 2003).

diabetes “Type II”:
“Type II diabetes is diagnosed when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body does not use the insulin that is produced effectively, 90 percent of people with diabetes have this type” (Canadian Diabetes Association, 2003).

diabetes “Type II”
“Type 2 diabetes is when the pancreas produces an insufficient amount of insulin or does not use the available insulin adequately (Canadian Health Network, 2000). These individuals are given a number of options to control glucose levels such as antihyperglycemic medications, dietary planning, and insulin injections. The onset of type 2 diabetes is seen in adults over the age of 45 years. It “affects about nine out of every ten people with diabetes” (Canadian Health Network, 2000).

diabetes “Type II”:
“Type II diabetes is the most common type of diabetes, usually appears after age 40, but can occur at a younger age, especially in high risk populations. It tends to be associated with obesity and is not an autoimmune reaction” (unlike type I). “It can be managed by changes in diet, physical activity and monitoring blood sugar, some require insulin and oral medication” (Saskatchewan Advisory Committee on Diabetes, 2000, p. 133)

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diet:
“ Food and drink regularly provided or consumed; habitual nourishment; the kind and amount of food prescribed for a person or animal for a special reason” (Merriam Webster Dictionary, 2003).

diet:
“ It is evident that for most of Canada, including the Artic and Subarctic areas, Aboriginal peoples lived primarily by hunting small and large game and by gathering plant foods, berries, lichens, nuts and other seasonally available land foods” (Waldram, Herring, & Young, 1995, p. 9, 18).

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discourses:
“Discourses are defined by Shore and Wright (1997) as configurations of ideas which provides the threads from which ideologies are woven and are viewed as patterns of thinking that overlap and reinforce each other while closing off alternate avenues of thinking” (Browne & Smye, 2002).
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discrimination:
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disease:
“Disease is differentially understood by Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people. Disease is perceived as situational and in a Western context, isolated from holistic health and reviewed on a case-by-case basis" (Kelm, 1998, as cited in Lindberg, 2001).

disease:
“In the Aboriginal context, the disease is the symptom and living out of balance is the disease. In many Aboriginal societies, disease is perceived as animate and as an entity in and of itself. It is an indicator of a larger problem" (Kelm, 1998, as cited in Lindberg, 2001).

disease:
“Diseases are measurable, recognizable physical/emotional/mental dysfunctions which may or may not be caused by an external agent, bacteria or virus, etc, and leads to symptoms” (Woods, 2003).

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diseases “communicable”:
“Transmittable disease, word origin 1534” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 2003).

diseases “contagious”:
“Not all infectious diseases are ‘contagious’ in the non-technical sense of the word, meaning easily passed from person to person” (Waldram, Herring, & Young, 1995, p. 74).

diseases “infectious”:
“Infectious refers to a disease cause by micro-organisms, such as bacteria or viruses. Not all infectious diseases are ‘contagious’ in the non-technical sense of the word, meaning easily passed from person to person” (Waldram, Herring, & Young, 1995, p. 74).

diseases “transmittable”:
“Transmittable disease, word origin 1534” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 2003).

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’disk list system’:
“In the 1920s, a suggestion was made by one doctor that a universal system of identifying Inuit would greatly facilitate the keeping of medial records and vital statistics. Each Inuit would wear a tag around his or here neck or wrist with an unique identification number” (Waldram, Herring, & Young, 1995, p. 169). “By the 1960s it was evident that Governments attempts to implement a “disc list” system, a means of keeping track of Inuit names whose Inuktitut names were incomprehensible to them, were largely a failure” (D. G. Smith, 1993, as cited in Waldram, Herring, & Young, 1995, p. 169).
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disparage:
“ Belittle, laugh at, sneer at, criticize, ridicule, mock, pour scorn on, put down” (Thesaurus, 2003).
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dispossession:
“ When speaking about Aboriginal people in Australia, this refers primarily to their loss of land. Given the spiritual ties which Indigenous people have to their land, its removal also led to the loss of their culture, language and religions, identity and economic independence (New South Wales ALC [NSWALC], 2002).

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DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid):
"DNA is the genetic material contained in the cells of the human body which acts like a genetic blueprint providing a plan for development unique to each individual" (Redmayne, 1998).

DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid):
"Word origin 1944; any of various nucleic acids that are usually the molecular basis of heredity, are localized especially in cell nuclei, and are constructed of a double helix held together by hydrogen bonds between purine and pyrimidine bases which project inward from two chains containing alternate links of deoxyribose and phosphate -- compare Recombinant DNA (Merriam-Webster's Dictionary online, 2003).

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dream catcher:
“ The dream catcher is part of a traditional legend. The web constructed within a perfect circle has a hole in the center. The web will catch the persons good ideas and the bad ones will go through the hole, helping the person reach their goals, and make good use of their ideas, dreams and visions (Alaskan Reflections, 2001).

dream catcher:
The Legend of the dream catcher…. “Long ago when the world was young, an old Lakota spiritual leader was on a high mountain and had a vision. In his vision, Iktomi, the great trickster and teacher of wisdom, appeared in the form of a spider and spoke the following… ‘The web is a perfect circle with a hole in the center. Use the web to help your people reach their goals, making good use of their ideas, dreams and visions. If you believe in the great spirit, the web will catch your good ideas and the bad ones will go through the hole’. The elder passed on his vision to the people and now many Indian people hang a dream catcher above their bed to sift their dreams and visions" (Alaskan Reflections, 2001).

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dreaming:
“The Dreaming has different meanings for different Aboriginal groups. To Australia Aboriginals the Dreaming can be seen as an embodiment of Aboriginal creation which gives meaning to everything. It establishes the rules governing relationships between the people, the land and all things” (NSWALC, 2002).

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dreams (Ojibwe):
“ Hallowell (1966) explained that dreams in the Ojibwe culture were more integrated into waking experiences than in Western societies. Thus, Ojibwe dream experiences are "as direct, straightforward and tangible as those of one's waking life" (Overholt, 1982). Sacred dreams, unlike ordinary dreams, are not discussed in casual conversation (Grim, 1983). It is common for the Ojibwe people to describe how they came to know something from a dream” (Reynolds Turton, 1997).
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For the full references of works cited above, please see the Glossary References page >>

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