Bravo for the Marshallese Regaining Control in a Post-Nuclear, Post-Colonial World

ISBN-10: 1111833842

ISBN-13: 9781111833848

Edition: 2nd 2013

Authors: Holly M. Barker

List price: $78.95
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This case study describes the role an applied anthropologist takes to help Marshallese communities understand the impact of radiation exposure on the environment and themselves, and addresses problems stemming from the U.S. nuclear weapons testing program conducted in the Marshall Islands from 1946-1958. The author demonstrates how the U.S. Government limits its responsibilities for dealing with the problems it created in the Marshall Islands. Through archival, life history, and ethnographic research, the author constructs a compelling history of the testing program from a Marshallese perspective. For more than five decades, the Marshallese have experienced the effects of the weapons testing program on their health and their environment. This book amplifies the voice of the Marshallese who share their knowledge about illnesses, premature deaths, and exile from their homelands. The author uses linguistic analysis to show how the Marshallese developed a unique radiation language to discuss problems related to their radiation exposure problems that never existed before the testing program. Drawing on her own experiences working with the government of the Marshall Islands, the author emphasizes the role of an applied anthropologist in influencing policy, and empowering community leaders to seek meaningful remedies.
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Book details

List price: $78.95
Edition: 2nd
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: Wadsworth
Publication date: 3/9/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 208
Size: 6.50" wide x 9.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.836
Language: English

Barbara Rose Johnston is Senior Research Scholar at the Center for Political Ecology and winner of the Lourdes Arizpe Award for her outstanding contributions in the application of anthropology to environmental issues and discourse. Some of her many important publications are Who Pays the Price?: The Sociocultural Context of Environmental Crisis (1994); Life and Death Matters: Human Rights and the Environment at the End of the Millennium (1997; 2nd ed forthcoming 2008); Disappearing Peoples: Indigenous Groups and Ethnic Minorities in South and Central Asia (2007); and The Consequential Damages of Nuclear War: The Rongelap Report (forthcoming 2008). Holly M. Barker is the former senior advisor to the Republic of the Marshall Islands Ambassador to the United States, and now teaches in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Washington. She is author of Bravo for the Marshallese: Regaining Control in a Post-Nuclear, Post-Colonial World (Wadsworth 2004).

Setting the Stage: The Geography, Social/Political Organization, and Language of the Marshall Islands
Location and Ecology
Early Migration
The Social and Political Structure
The Marshallese Language and Its Dialects
A Colonial History of the Marshall Islands
Colonial Expansion
U.S. Naval Administration of the Marshall Islands
The Arrival of Anthropologists
The Move toward Self-Governance
The Compact of Free Association
The U.S. Nuclear Weapons Testing Program
The Official U.S. Government Account of the Events
The Limitations on U.S. Government Responsibility
Declassified U.S. Government Documents
Ethnography and a Marshallese Narrative of History
Witness Testimonies: March 1, 1954-The Day the U.S. Government Detonated the Bravo Shot
Witness Testimonies: Evacuation and the Decontamination Process
Witness Testimonies: Birth Defects
Witness Testimonies: Other Medical and Environmental Problems
Witness Testimonies: Interactions with U.S. Government Medical Providers and Scientists
A Marshallese Narrative of History
Alienation from the Land: The Rongelap Experience
The Importance of Geography
The Importance of Land
Damage, Injury, and Loss
Experiences in Exile
The Loss of Self-Sufficiency
Stigma/Psychological Problems among the "Bombed People"
Gender, Age, and Status in Exile
Language and the Testing Program
Radiation and a Colonial Language of Control
Language as Resistance
Uncovering Themes in Linguistic Data
Assigning Responsibility
Women's Reproductive Illnesses
A Unique Marshallese Radiation Language
Changed Circumstances: Petitioning the U.S. Government
Advisory Committee on Changed Circumstances
Content of the Petition
Review of the Petition
Other Case Studies
French Polynesia
Subjects of Human Radiation Experimentation
Methods and Community Empowerment
Developing Bonds of Trust
Learning the Language
Archival Research
Access to Information
Building on the Work of Others
Life Story and Oral History Collection
Local Counterparts and Key Informants
Public Education and Training of Students
Transcription and Translation
Expect to Be Challenged
Repeat Visits to the Field
The Policy Realm
Methods of the NCT Project
Competing Narratives of History
Flaws in the U.S. Government's Accounting of History
A New Narrative of History
Looking toward the Future
The Failure of Reconciliation and the Mobility of Structural Violence
Rongelap Ultimatum
Structural Violence
Mounting Tension
Mixed Messages
Applied and Public Anthropology
Budgetary Cuts Threaten Lives of Washington's Hungry and Sick
Nuclear Claims Tribunal
Anthropology and the Rongelap Land Claim
Climate Change and Sea-Level Rise
Appendix Categories for Personal Injury Awards, Nuclear Claims Tribunal
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