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Vivian Choi

Graduate Student

imaginations of disaster, disaster risk management technologies, post-tsunami re-constructions, buffer zones, religiosity, ethno-nationalism, oceanic perspectives and histories, maps, built environments, science and technology studies, Sri Lanka

2-E Young Hall

Office Hours for Spring :

  • Wednesdays, 2:00-4:00

Biography:

*Office hours for Spring:  Wednesdays, 2:00-4:00

Education:
2001 B.A. Anthropology, minor Gender/Feminist studies, Pomona College, Claremont, CA
2006 M.A. Sociocultural Anthropology, UC Davis, Davis, CA
2007 Advanced to Candidacy
PhD Designated Emphasis: Social Theory and Comparative History


Research Interests:

imaginations of disaster, disaster risk management technologies, post-tsunami re-constructions, buffer zones, religiosity, ethno-nationalism, oceans, maps, built environments, science and technology studies, Sri Lanka


Research Description:

I have recently returned from Sri Lanka where I focused on reconstruction efforts after the devastation wrought by the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004.  I spent most of my time in the eastern coast, which, in terms of casualties and property lost, was the most devastated part of the island.  Reconstruction there moved slowly, due to a number of factors, including but not limited to: the institution of a no-build buffer zone (in one of the most densely populated areas of the island); latent violence and political uncertainty; a long history of ethno-nationalist warring and displacements; and poverty.  My dissertation examines several engagements with built environments pertaining to the re-construction of coastal livelihoods and homes.  I also focus on the building of cultures of safety and security through recently-implemented disaster management policies and disaster preparedness activities and technologies.  In light of the Sri Lankan Government's recent victory in the long-standing war with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), I give particular attention to how these efforts fit into national schemes of security.


Publications:

2009.  "A Safer Sri Lanka? Technology, Security, and Preparedness in Post-Tsunami Sri Lanka." In Tsunami in a Time of War, E. Hedman and M. de Alwis, eds, Colombo: ICES.

2010 (forthcoming). "After Disasters: The Nature-Cultures of National Insecurity in Sri Lanka." In Dynamics of Disaster, B. Allen and R. Dowty, eds. London: Earthscan.

 

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