This article shows how Dutch technological culture has historically dealt with and developed around vulnerability with respect to flooding and indicates recent developments in attitude towards the flood threat. The flooding of New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina temporarily made the Dutch public worry about the flood defense infrastructure in the Netherlands, exemplified by the Delta Works. Could this happen in the Netherlands? After the flooding disaster of 1953, a system of large dams was built to offer safety from flooding with—in theory at least—protection levels that are much higher than in New Orleans. In the public's perception the protection offered is absolute. In practice not all flood defense structures are as secure as they are supposed to be, but their upgrading takes time and money. Katrina has served as a reminder of what is at stake: Can the Dutch afford to take another 10 years to restore the protection level of their flood defenses? Calls for pride in clever engineering are the latest in a continuing debate on the best way to continue life below sea level.
Anna J. Wesselink, Wiebe E. Bijker, Huib J. de Vriend and Maarten S. Krol
Benjamin's well-known emblematic description of the rememberer as an archaeologist in "Excavation and Memory" is a fitting point of departure to explore the meaning, transmission, and form of cultural memory as a methodology and a subject in German studies. In this article, I explore the shift toward a renewed materiality of memory in fields such as archaeology and disaster studies that have been tangential to the discourses of cultural memory based on trauma and on identity politics prevalent in German cultural studies. After describing current practice in these fields and their relevance to the formation of cultural memory within the context of German studies, I then read the writing of W.G. Sebald within the framework of archaeological tropes in which the spaces dedicated to the dead play a major role. The close reading of Sebald's text serves as a model for re-reading other contemporary German literary texts within the broader context of other disciplinary approaches to the space of memory in the aftermath of atrocity.
George Holmes, Joel Wainwright, Jason Yaeger, Eric D. Carter, Kelley L. Denham, K. Jill Fleuriet, Kathleen Gillogly, Shannon Stunden Bower, Joel Hartter, Catherine Fennell and Andrew Oberle
Dowie, Mark, Conservation Refugees: The Hundred-Year Conflict between Global Conservation and Native Peoples
Escobar , Arturo, Territories of Difference: Place, Movements, Life, Redes
Fagan , Brian, The Great Warming: Climate Change and the Rise and Fall of Civilizations
Hornborg , Alf, J. R. McNeill, and Joan Martinez-Alier, eds., Rethinking Environmental History: World-System History and Global Environmental Change
Jones, Eric C., and Arthur D. Murphy , eds., The Political Economy of Hazards and Disasters
Langston, Nancy, Toxic Bodies: Hormone Disruptors and the Legacy of DES
Li, Tania Murray, The Will to Improve: Governmentality, Development, and the Practice of Politics
Radkau, Joachim, Nature and Power: A Global History of the Environment
Robbins , Paul, Lawn People: How Grasses, Weeds, and Chemicals Make Us Who We Are
Sheridan , Michael, and Celia Nyamweru, eds., African Sacred Groves: Ecological Dynamics & Social Change
Walker, Richard, The Country in the City: The Greening of the San Francisco Bay Area
Wrangham , Richard, and Elizabeth Ross, eds., Science and Conservation in African Forests: The Benefits of Long-Term Research
SherriLynn Colby-Bottel, Joshua Reno, Tal Liron, Genevieve Lakier, Andrew Tarter, Adam Henne, Joseph Doyle Hankins, Peter Rudiak-Gould, Sharla Blank, J. Stephen Lansing, Alaka Wali, John Wagner, David Zurick, Robert Fletcher and Brian Grabbatin
BUTTON, Gregory, Disaster Culture: Knowledge and Uncertainty in the Wake of Human and Environmental Catastrophe
FALASCA-ZAMPONI, Simonetta, Waste and Consumption: Capitalism, the Environment, and the Life of Things
FIJN, Natasha, Living with Herds: Human-Animal Coexistence in Mongolia
GUNERATNE, Arjun, ed., Culture and the Environment in the Himalaya
HASTRUP, Frida, Weathering the World: Recovery in the Wake of the Tsunami in a Tamil Fishing Village
JOHNSTON, Barbara Rose, ed., Life and Death Matters: Human Rights, Environment and Social Justice
KIRBY, Peter Wynn, Troubled Natures: Waste, Environment, Japan
MCADAM, Jane. ed., Climate Change and Displacement: Multidisciplinary Perspectives
MENZIES, Charles R., Red Flags and Lace Coiff es: Identity and Survival in a Breton Village
MORAN, Emilio F., Environmental Social Science: Human-Environment Interactions and Sustainability
NEWING, Helen, Conducting Research in Conservation: A Social Science Perspective
PARR, Joy, Sensing Changes: Technologies, Environments, and the Everyday, 1953–2003
RADEMACHER, Anne M., Reigning the River: Urban Ecologies and Political Transformation in Kathmandu
RUTHERFORD, Stephanie, Governing the Wild: Ecotours of Power
WALKER, Peter A. and Patrick T. HURLEY, Planning Paradise: Politics and Visioning of Land Use in Oregon
Rebecca Feinberg, Patrick Nason and Hamsini Sridharan
In studying the lives and livelihoods of human beings, the social sciences and humanities often find their lines of inquiry tugged in the direction of other, nonhuman beings. When Claude Lévi-Strauss (1963) suggested that “thinking with” animals was relevant and fruitful to the study of humankind, scholars began to follow these leads with academic rigor, enthusiasm, and creativity. Propelled into the new millennium by the passion of the environmental movement, compounded by natural and anthropogenic disaster, and now entrenched in the discourse of the Anthropocene, recent scholarship has simultaneously called into question the validity of human exceptionalism and expanded our social and political worlds to include animals and myriad other nonhuman beings. This move is paradoxical: as the significance of human action on this planet has increased, the category of the human is continually challenged and redrawn. While contemporary posthumanist critique rethinks the importance of animals and strives to destabilize long-standing ontological exceptions, it does so just as the effects of human presence overwhelmingly single out our species as the dominant agents of planetary change (see Chakrabarty 2009; Steffen, Crutzen, and McNeill 2007).
Culture, Communication and Computers Applied to a Real World Problem
Stephen M. Lyon and Michael Fischer
Displacement following natural disasters brings about both short- and long-term issues that urban planners must address. While we recognize that many (though not all) aspects of the short-term plans may not require extensive anthropological insights, the long-term plans, on the contrary, do. We suggest in this article that one of the most important contributions anthropologists can make is producing formal models of indigenous knowledge systems (which are derived from underlying cultural systems) and identifying the ways in which such systems are communicated. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach which borrows from developments in artificial intelligence (AI) and multi-agent modelling (MAM), we argue that many of the tools that such disciplines have produced can serve an important role in long-range planning for the coexistence of disparate communities if they are adequately informed by anthropological understandings of the communities involved. We briefly outline the anthropology of communication and the culture concept before turning our attention to something that AI and MAM researchers have dubbed ontologies to suggest that it is possible to model cultural systems in dynamic ways that enable sociocultural models of communities which are simultaneously resilient and robust. We give a concrete example of such a cultural system (izzat or 'honour' in South Asia) and demonstrate what an ontology of such a system might look like.
Rabbi Joseph Krauskopf
Joseph Krauskopf immigrated from his native Prussia to the United States at the age of fourteen, and was ordained with the first class of students at the newly established Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati. Quickly establishing a reputation for his spellbinding oratory, he became rabbi of Knesseth Israel in Philadelphia, one of the largest Reform congregations in the United States, with a membership composed predominantly of congregants with German background. Although he was a strong supporter of US military action during the Spanish-American War, the First World War caused him considerable anguish, as he remained attached to his roots in German culture throughout his career. In a series of Sunday morning discourses and holiday sermons beginning on Rosh Hashanah 1914, Krauskopf expressed horror at the widespread suffering caused by the war, strongly supported the initial US policy of neutrality, and vehemently criticized expressions of growing support for the Entente Cordiale. While upholding the US war effort after America's entry into combat, as the end drew near he continued to excoriate policies that would humiliate and impoverish Germany, with prescient warnings of future disasters.
If one practical way to define trauma is to consider it as a chronic inability to access and process catastrophic events, that is, as a systematic and haunting blockage of memory formation and reclamation of past experiences, then historians have an inherent stake in the concept. This basic observation is not new, of course, but until now only historians of the Holocaust have evinced serious and consistent interest in the vast literature on Trauma Studies. Most historians—for example those who work with the distant past, with non-Western societies, or with less extreme historical events—have not had to engage with the historical implications of trauma. In as much as historians use the term, they do so from the lay standpoint that considers trauma as a horrible and tragic man-made event or a natural disaster. In its popular and very elastic usage the event (trauma) and its consequences (always “traumatic”) run the risk of remaining unexplored and largely unexplained, and thus, paradoxically, actually traumatic in the sense of not allowing access to the past. While remaining cognizant of the bland usage of the concept of trauma, the goal of this special issue is to offer a modest commentary on what Trauma Studies can offer to “Other Historians” and, perhaps, on what they can offer in return. The work presented here is of a provisional nature and is the product of a year-long seminar by a diverse group of historians at the Institute of Historical Studies at the University of Texas at Austin and the international conference, “Trauma and History,” that they organized.
Analytical Routes through Multiple Meanings
Translator : Jeffrey Hoff
pertinent for stipulating the destination of a pilgrimage. The authors include an extensive list of studies that examine locations of disasters, cemeteries and memorials, places associated with war heroes and artistic personalities, and even shopping centers