Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Catastrophe and Culture: The Anthropology of Disaster (School for Advanced Research Advanced Seminar Series) First Edition Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1930618152
ISBN-10: 1930618158
Why is ISBN important?
ISBN
This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. The 13-digit and 10-digit formats both work.
Scan an ISBN with your phone
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Buy used On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
$15.99 On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
Buy new On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
$19.95 On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
More Buying Choices
20 New from $13.75 31 Used from $3.74
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Prime Student Free%20Two-Day%20Shipping%20for%20College%20Students%20with%20Amazon%20Student


The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
$19.95 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 2 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Catastrophe and Culture: The Anthropology of Disaster (School for Advanced Research Advanced Seminar Series)
  • +
  • Acts of God: The Unnatural History of Natural Disaster in America
  • +
  • Markets of Sorrow, Labors of Faith: New Orleans in the Wake of Katrina
Total price: $62.25
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

Review

[T]he contributors to this volume provide a comprehensive account of the nature of disasters, their complex mix of the physical, biological, and socio-cultural, and their use in the elucidation and reconstitution of social life which are the goals of the mining anthropologist... This volume comes out of the School of American Research seminars. This means it is particularly well integrated and interwoven... The end product, then, is a most coherent and interesting read which will resonate with academics and citizens as this brave new millennium of ours continues to present us with new and increasingly complex disasters. --Jonathan Skinner, The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute Vol. 10, no. 4 (December 2004)

[T]he contributors to this volume provide a comprehensive account of the nature of disasters, their complex mix of the physical, biological, and socio-cultural, and their use in the elucidation and reconstitution of social life which are the goals of the mining anthropologist... This volume comes out of the School of American Research seminars. This means it is particularly well integrated and interwoven... The end product, then, is a most coherent and interesting read which will resonate with academics and citizens as this brave new millennium of ours continues to present us with new and increasingly complex disasters. --The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute Vol. 10, no. 4 (December 2004)

These important essays concern both the value of disasters for anthropologists and scholars interested in analyzing cultures and the important insights that an anthropological perspective can offer to the academic study of disaster and to policy makers…. --Choice, vol. 40, no. 5, January 2003

[T]he contributors to this volume provide a comprehensive account of the nature of disasters, their complex mix of the physical, biological, and socio-cultural, and their use in the elucidation and reconstitution of social life which are the goals of the mining anthropologist... This volume comes out of the School of American Research seminars. This means it is particularly well integrated and interwoven... The end product, then, is a most coherent and interesting read which will resonate with academics and citizens as this brave new millennium of ours continues to present us with new and increasingly complex disasters. --The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute Vol. 10, no. 4 (December 2004)

These important essays concern both the value of disasters for anthropologists and scholars interested in analyzing cultures and the important insights that an anthropological perspective can offer to the academic study of disaster and to policy makers…. --Choice, vol. 40, no. 5, January 2003

About the Author

ANTHONY OLIVER-SMITH is Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at the University of Florida. He held the Munich Re Foundation Chair of Social Vulnerability at the United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security 2007–2008. He has done anthropological research and consultation on issues relating to involuntary resettlement, as well as the impacts of natural and technological disasters, in Peru, Honduras, India, Brazil, Jamaica, Mexico, Japan, and the United States since the 1970s.

Hoffman is an anthropologist, filmmaker, and writer.

ANTHONY OLIVER-SMITH is Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at the University of Florida. He held the Munich Re Foundation Chair of Social Vulnerability at the United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security 2007–2008. He has done anthropological research and consultation on issues relating to involuntary resettlement, as well as the impacts of natural and technological disasters, in Peru, Honduras, India, Brazil, Jamaica, Mexico, Japan, and the United States since the 1970s.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Series: School for Advanced Research Advanced Seminar Series
  • Paperback: 328 pages
  • Publisher: School for Advanced Research Press; First Edition edition (March 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1930618158
  • ISBN-13: 978-1930618152
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.7 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #346,648 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Robert David STEELE Vivas HALL OF FAME on December 13, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one of those books where the Amazon.com referal system worked for me. I would never have found it otherwise. It is a timely book, and it has direct relevance to the 9-11 catastrophe because everything this book talks about in terms of "cultures of catastrophe" (one could call them cultures of oblivion or cultures of inattention) resonates with the findings of the joint congressional panel on the many ways in which the CIA, FBI, and NSA failed America.
What most engaged me about this book, apart from its outstanding attention to the relationship between cultures of inattention or distraction and major catastrophic events (the book makes clear that catastrophe's don't have to happen--they make the jump from disasters when the over-all system of first responders and related parties fails to act quickly and correctly in harmony, precisely because of their past culture), is its focus on the total system, on every feature of society in relation to the environment.
The editors write: "One of the common sources of the policy-practice defect is its construction on culturally bound assumptions. In disaster contexts, aid often gets delivred in inappropriate forms and according to unsuited principles." The book excells at looking at the uneven record of disaster preparedness, and the lack of understanding to local contexts that often help turn disasters into catastrophes.
I recommend this book as a primary reference for national security practitioners as well as state & local responders. The ... billions now in the Homeland Security budget was not designed with this book's lessons in mind, and will in all likelihood do more damage than good when we are tested again.
Read more ›
Comment 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A collection of papers from a seminar on the role of culture in major disasters and their aftermath, as seen through the prism of anthropology, this book offers great insights into the playing out of a community's response to both natural and man-made catastrophes. While neither New Orleans nor the recent Japanese crisis are mentioned, it seemed to explain a great deal of what happened in those more recent instances. I would have given this book five stars were it not for the fact that the academic language of some papers may prove difficult for non-academic readers, but with patience, it is well worth making the effort.
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have just finished the last essay of "Catastrophe & Culture: The Anthropology of Disaster", a collection that offers a deep and stimulating insight into the culture of disaster mechanisms. The collection is built upon a multifaceted and collaborative approach that brilliantly argues that "the conjunction of a human population and a potentially destructive agent does not inevitable produce a disaster" but that "a disaster becomes unavoidable in the context of a historically produced pattern of vulnerability."

Ironically, that last essay I had parked for a while was "Missing Expertise, Categorical Politics, and Chronic Disasters" by S. Ravi Rajan. Here, utilizing the Bhopal disaster as a case study, Rajan argues admirably about the harm that missing different types of expertise can do to prepare and respond to disasters, from contingent expertise that is ready to intervene immediately, to conceptual expertise to cover the broad range of needs of long-term rehabilitation strategies, and ethnographic expertise that refers to the ability to gain contextual and grounded understanding and the capacity to act on that understanding. And in filling modestly some of those gaps is precisely where it resonated with me strongly, as I aim that part my work, and the conversations supported by Disaster Bound can contribute in that direction.

For instance another favorite was "Punctuated Entropy as Culture-Induced Change" by Christopher L. Dyer.
Read more ›
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The contributors definitely had mastery of subject knowledge but lacked the fluidity in their arguments to make it a pleasurable read, and prevented me from making a connection to the material as the reader. "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great Shipment and Great Product!!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Catastrophe and Culture: The Anthropology of Disaster (School for Advanced Research Advanced Seminar Series)
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Catastrophe and Culture: The Anthropology of Disaster (School for Advanced Research Advanced Seminar Series)