Forgetting Flooding? : Post-disaster Livelihood and Embedded Remembrance in Suburban Santa Fe, Argentina

in Volume 12 (2017): Issue 1 (Mar 2017): Special Symposium on Living with Disasters. Guest Editors: Zuzana Hrdličková and Hannah Swee
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Flooding has long been a recurrent problem in the Argentinian city of Santa Fe, mainly affecting the poverty-stricken suburban outskirts. In 2003 one of the worst floods ever occurred, which also affected residents in the middle income sectors who had never been flooded before and who reacted with an extraordinary process of commemoration and protest against the government for its lax disaster management. Paradoxically, most other past disastrous floods in the city’s history seem to dwell in the shadows of social oblivion. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in the years 2004–2011, this article analyzes how local flood memories are made through daily life practices and places in the suburban outskirts, more than through public commemorations, which has implications for vulnerability and risk.