Disasters in Postmodern Times: The 2011 Japan

DSpace Repository

Disasters in Postmodern Times: The 2011 Japan

Show full item record

Title: Disasters in Postmodern Times: The 2011 Japan
Author: Korstanje, Maximiliano; Tarlow, Peter; Geoffrey, Skoll
Abstract: At 2:46 pm on March 11, 2011 Japan suffered one of its most intense and devastating earthquakes. The earthquake measured some 7.9 on the Richter scale. It was so intense that world’s media provided almost nonstop 24-hour news coverage. The reports spoke about the number of victims, and behind the reports the ghost of a Chernobyl-like nuclear disaster was ever present. The earthquake followed by a tsunami not only devastated the Japanese coast but also posed serious risks should the Fukushima nuclear reactor suffer a meltdown. Such a meltdown was a more serious threat to life considering the following relevant aspects: i) The potential for a nuclear accident or worse now became a real possibility, such as a repetition of what occurred in Chernobyl. This potential nuclear threat dominated the public’s anguish. ii) No one was sure what would be the negative results on the locale’s children Humanity once again had to note that in the face of the earthquake and tsunami it was powerless. iii) Television viewers saw the harm that nature had done both on the land and on the sea. Television viewers in other countries realized that no one was immune from the uncontrollable effects of a natural disaster, thus viewers once again noted their impotence in the face of natural disasters. For example, the mass media showed pictures of water invading Japanese cities and destroying all that lay in its path. iv) The media’s emphasis on personal “miracles” not only reinforced the notion of impotence in the face of natural disasters but also introduced an element of the mystical into the tragedy. Media reports of people who saved their lives against all odds served not only as examples of the exception to the rule, but also introduced an element of humility into the arrogance of modernity. Science simply could not solve everything and once again we noted the concept of machina ex deus v) The story was brought home by eyewitness accounts by visitors to Japan
Date: 2014


Files in this item

Files Size Format View
disasters Baudrillard.pdf 111.1Kb PDF Thumbnail

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show full item record

Search DSpace


Browse

My Account