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Quickly Noted: The Joy of Disaster?

April 16, 2010

Have I got a treat for you today! Two of my favorite folks (oreos and milk? Amanda Ripley and Claire Rubin) have conspired to review a truly unique book; one on a subject I’d never heard about: the joy of disaster.

Rebecca Solnit published A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster last year and Ms. Ripley recently published a review of the book in the Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. Ms. Ripley finds much to like about Ms. Solnit’s book, but cautions against what she calls, “sweeping condemnations of the ‘elite’.” Ms. Ripley notes that in today’s world, the difference between the “us” of the public, and the “them” of the media elite is often blurred. As a case in point, the media was central to the telling of the 9/11 story, but many were also among the survivors of that day. It’s a very fair review that makes me want to read the book that much more.

You can download and read the review by filling out a quick form here (alternately, JHSEM offers personal subscriptions for just $75/year).

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