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The Political Biography of an Earthquake: Aftermath and Amnesia in Gujarat, India

The Political Biography of an Earthquake: Aftermath and Amnesia in Gujarat, India (Paperback)

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Synopsis

For those so-minded, the aftermath of an earthquake presents opportunities to intervene. Thus, in Gujarat, following the disaster of 2001, leaders were deposed, proletariats created, religious fundamentalism incubated, the state restructured, and industrial capital- ism expanded exponentially. Rather than gazing in at those struggling in the ruins, as is commonplace in the literature, this book looks out from the affected region at those who came to intervene. Based on extensive research amid the dust and noise of re- construction, the author focuses on the survivors and their interactions with death, history, and with those who came to use the shock of disaster to change the order of things. Edward Simpson takes us deep into the experience of surviving a 'natural' disaster. We see a society in mourning, further alienated by manufactured conditions of uncertainty and absurdity. We witness arguments about the past. What was important? What should be preserved? Was modernisation the cause of the disaster or the antidote? As people were putting things back together, they also knew that future earthquakes were inevitable. How did they learn to live with this terrible truth? How have people in other times and places come to terms with the promise of another earthquake, knowing that things will fall apart again?

Philosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesInterdisciplinary studiesRegional studiesPhilosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesSocial welfare & social servicesAid & relief programmes Publisher: C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd Publication Date: 07/02/2014 ISBN-13: 9781849042871  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
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Edward Simpson is Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. He co-edited Struggling With History: Islam and Cosmopolitanism in the Western Indian Ocean, also published by Hurst.

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