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Natural Disasters and Cultural Responses - Studies in Third World Societies

Oliver-Smith, A.

June 1, 1986

This collection of articles focuses on natural disasters from earthquakes to famines in developing nations and on the human response from immediate reactions to long term social, political, and economic adaptations that result in social change and development. The introduction, "Disaster Context and Causation: An Overview of Changing Perspectives in Disaster Research" (A. Oliver-Smith) discusses natural disasters, the scientific warning of impending extinction, and the relationships among the environment, people, and their culture. The titles of the articles are: (1) "Decades of Disaster: Promise and Performance in the Callejon de Huaylas, Peru" (P. L. Doughty); (2) "It Shook, Again: The Mexico City Earthquake of 1985" (S. S. Robinson and others); (3) "Earthquake, Tsunami, Resettlement, and Survival in two North Pacific Alaskan Native Villages" (N. Y. Davis); (4) "Algae: A Minor Disaster in the Jezreel Valley, Israel" (S. H. Lees); (5) "The Role of Social Relations in the Response to Riverbank Erosion Hazards and Population Resettlement in Bangladesh" (M. Q. Zaman); (6) "Drought and Desertification as Constraints on the Agricultural Development of the Western Sudan" (W. I. Torry); and (7) "Coping with Famine, Drought, and War in Sub-Saharan Africa" (A. Hansen). (DJC)