Numéro de périodique
On the Witness Stand: Environment Crises, Disasters and Social Justice
Archivio Antropologico Mediterraneo
Natural disasters, Social justice, Status of victim
EN | IT
This second issue of 2016, the Archivio Antropologico Mediterraneo, open access, n. 14, is focused on a main subject, namely the status of victim in so-called ‘natural disasters’, and its relation to social justice. The papers adopt an ethnographic and comparative perspective making quite interesting contributions. This special dossier of Archivio Antropologico Mediterraneo, titled On the Witness Stand: Environmental Crises, Disasters and Social Justice, seeks to inaugurate a space of anthropological reflection in this sphere of inquiry in order to more closely examine the symbolic, cultural and more broadly social aspects of legal disputes linked to disasters and to bring the ethnographic gaze to bear on the settings in which these cases erupt. Unlike legal experts who investigate the role of law in disasters, as anthropologists our intention is to investigate what happens with disasters when they are confronted with law, focusing on the host of legal cases we propose to term “disaster trials”. Of course it is not our intention to downplay the importance of the technical and procedural aspects of these cases. We argue, however, that the most effective way of understanding what is going on in the courtroom is to analyze disaster trials from a variety of perspectives, not least of which anthropological.