Do deep-time disasters hold lessons for contemporary understandings of resilience and vulnerability? The case of the Laacher See volcanic eruption

Rowan Jackson, Felix Riede

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract

Extreme events, including volcanic eruptions, have always affected human communities. Understanding the ways in which such events impact societies—past, present, and future—requires attention to both the physical parameters of the hazard in question and the societal nature of the affected communities. In many parts of the world, however, recent migration or the marked socioeconomic changes of recent centuries have resulted in a loss of collective memory relating to such events. Along with the memory of the events, any notion of how to respond to these events has also been lost. While the geosciences can reconstruct the magnitude and nature of such extreme events, archaeology can reconstruct past societal impacts and their responses. Such reconstructions that take account of both environmental and societal factors can inform scenarios of future impacts and facilitate holistic surge capacity tests. Furthermore, archaeology garners great public interest in many countries. When we accept that disaster risk reduction needs to include sociocultural aspects, archaeological data and heritage can be used much more effectively in (a) risk management, in (b) policy influencing, and in (c) boosting disaster literacy through museum engagement. In order to develop and implement such novel uses of our geo-cultural heritage[…]
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGoing forward by looking back : archaeological perspectives on socio-ecological crisis, response, and collapse
PublisherBerghahn Books: New York
Chapter1
Pages19
Number of pages53
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-78920-865-8
ISBN (Print)978-1-78920-864-1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2020

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