Offering what they call a cultural theory of risk perception, the authors suggest that peoples complaints about hazards should never be taken at face value. One must look further to discover what forms of social organization are being defended or attacked. -- New York Times
From the Inside Flap
"Poses an important question. Why do people emphasize certain risks while ignoring others? In particular, why have so many in our society singled out pollution as a source of concern? . . . Offering what they call a 'cultural theory of risk perception,' the authors suggest that people's complaints about hazards should never be taken at face value. One must look further to discover what forms of social organization are being defended or attacked."
--New York Times Book Review
"The authors call into question the presumed scientific objectivity of environmental risk assessment. Risk and Culture is a brief book organized around the premise that the selection of particular single issues (such as nuclear power or exposure to asbestos or ionizing radiation) as environmental hazards is culturally determined. The wellsprings of environmentalism in this and other nations, therefore, are not objective, empirical, rational, or free of value judgements; rather, environmentalism reflects moral, economic, political, and other value-laden factors. Judgments about what is or is not a danger are socially selected. . . . this is a first-rate critical analysis."
--New England Journal of Medicine
"This view of risk as a socially constructed phenomenon is a creative and refreshing addition to the risk analysis literature."
"A shrewd and provocative book."
See all Editorial Reviews