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Confronting Catastrophe: New Perspectives on Natural Disasters

David E. Alexander

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Product Details
01 Jan 2000
Terra Publishing
288 pages - 234 x 156 x 17mm
Confronting Catastrophe addresses natural disasters in terms of the issues arising from globalization, technological development and consumer culture. These factors have profoundly altered social and economic values, and international relations have responded to a new balance of forces and ideologies. Beginning by examining the theoretical underpinnings of academic and applied work the author then considers cultural, economic and historical changes in relation to the impact of disasters on human societies. Special attention is given to the effects of new technologies on vulnerability to natural catastrophe and to the difference in impacts between industrialized nations and developing countries. It is argued that, far from being exceptional events, disasters are a normal part of life and a substantial influence on most human cultures.
Preface. Introduction. Definitions. The study of disaster. Society and culture. Past, present and future. Technology, economics and logistics. Moral and philosophical issues. Worlds apart. Finem respice. Bibliography. Index.
David Alexander is Professor of Geosciences at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
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