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THE SOCIAL AETIOLOGY OF DISASTERS

THE SOCIAL AETIOLOGY OF DISASTERS DOES IT MAKE SENSE TO TALK ABOUT THE CAUSES O F DISASTERS? When disasters were seen as infrequent destructive events arising from the influence of remote cosmic forces, it made little sense t o spend any length of time in considering these causes, since not only were the events themselves so infrequent and idiosyncratic in their incidence as to be unlikely to yield useful generalisations, but they were also likely to arise from inherently inscrutable and uncontrollable sources. The best that could be done was t o concentrate upon the provision of rescue and relief services when these were required, in order to treat the symptoms rather than the causes of disaster. This situation has been changing, however, in a number of ways. World-wide communications have developed, so that we are now more aware than isolated local communities could have been in the past of similar kinds of events recurring at slightly different locations. At the same time, our growing understanding of the nature of our environment bas been leading us t o realise that many destructive natur phenomena are susceptible to analysis, and possibly t o predi tion. And we are also coming t o realise that http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Disasters Wiley

THE SOCIAL AETIOLOGY OF DISASTERS

Disasters , Volume 3 (1) – Mar 1, 1979

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References (14)

Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 1979 Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
ISSN
0361-3666
eISSN
1467-7717
DOI
10.1111/j.1467-7717.1979.tb00198.x
pmid
20958397
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

DOES IT MAKE SENSE TO TALK ABOUT THE CAUSES O F DISASTERS? When disasters were seen as infrequent destructive events arising from the influence of remote cosmic forces, it made little sense t o spend any length of time in considering these causes, since not only were the events themselves so infrequent and idiosyncratic in their incidence as to be unlikely to yield useful generalisations, but they were also likely to arise from inherently inscrutable and uncontrollable sources. The best that could be done was t o concentrate upon the provision of rescue and relief services when these were required, in order to treat the symptoms rather than the causes of disaster. This situation has been changing, however, in a number of ways. World-wide communications have developed, so that we are now more aware than isolated local communities could have been in the past of similar kinds of events recurring at slightly different locations. At the same time, our growing understanding of the nature of our environment bas been leading us t o realise that many destructive natur phenomena are susceptible to analysis, and possibly t o predi tion. And we are also coming t o realise that

Journal

DisastersWiley

Published: Mar 1, 1979

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