CFP, “The making of mourning, memorialization and post-disaster recovery: Anthropological perspectives and future engagements”, Society for Applied Anthropology, Pittsburgh, March 24-28 2015


Society for Applied Anthropology, Pittsburgh, March 24-28 2015

 “The making of mourning, memorialization and post-disaster recovery:  

Anthropological perspectives and future engagements”

This panel critically examines the making of “aftermaths” of disasters. While memorialization begins with trauma, the timing of the recognition of trauma can vary. As such, our attempts to memorialize are constitutive of the lived experience and temporal dimensions of disaster, of grief and recovery themselves. On this basis, the panel asks: What are the diverse ways in which individuals and communities grieve for and memorialize the dead? How do particular morning practices as well as selectively chosen objects and symbols that come to be associated with the disaster make a claim about the disaster itself and the subsequent process of recovery? Finally, how do anthropologists in turn participate in the process whereby a disaster transitions and transforms into the various aftermaths of it? We invite papers that address these issues from applied perspectives that engage with theoretical questions that include but are not limited to:

  • the democratization of memorialization
  • selective remembering as both a means to a recovery and a socio-political erasure
  • the potentiality and limitations of producing a collection of disaster narratives
  • and/or the role of anthropology in both catalyzing and safeguarding the politics of memorialization in post-disaster contexts.

We welcome studies of both natural and human-made catastrophes of the 21st century, such as the Haiyan Typhoon, the Bhopal Disaster, Hurricane Katrina, the Great East Japan Disaster, 9/11, and many others.

If you are interested please send your abstract by October 10th to or

Sébastien Penmellen Boret, International Research Institute of Disaster Science, Tohoku University


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