The March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan plunged the country into a state of crisis. As the nation struggled to recover from a record breaking magnitude 9 earthquake and a tsunami that was as high as thirty-eight meters in some places, news trickled out that Fukushima had experienced meltdowns in three reactors. These tragic catastrophes claimed some 20,000 lives, initially displacing some 500,000 people and overwhelming Japan's formidable disaster preparedness.
Natural Disaster and Nuclear Crisis in Japan brings together the analysis and insights of a group of distinguished experts on Japan to examine what happened, how various institutions and actors responded and what lessons can be drawn from Japan's disaster. The contributors, many of whom experienced the disaster first hand, assess the wide-ranging repercussions of this catastrophe and how it is already reshaping Japanese culture, politics, energy policy, and urban planning.
Introduction, Jeff Kingston
Part I. Disaster: Reports from Tohoku
1. Tohoku Diary: Reportage on the Tohoku Disaster, Gerald Curtis
2. Recovery in Tohoku, John F. Morris
Part II. Volunteerism, Civil Society and Media
3. From Kobe to Tohoku: The Potential and the Peril of a Volunteer Infrastructure, Simon Avenell
4. Civil Society and the Triple Disasters: Revealed Strengths and Weaknesses, Yuko Kawato, Robert Pekkanen and Yutaka Tsujinaka
5. Social Media in Disaster Japan, David H. Slater, Nishimura Keiko and Love Kindstrand
6. March 11, 2011 Online: Comparing Japanese Newspaper Websites and International News Websites, Leslie M. Tkach-Kawasaki
Part III. Energy
7. Networks of Power: Institutions and Local Residents in Post-Tohoku Japan, Daniel P. Aldrich
8. Hard Choices: Japan's Post-Fukushima Energy Policy in the 21st Century, Paul J. Scalise
9. Fukushima and the Political Economy of Power Policy in Japan, Andrew Dewitt, Iida Tetsunari and Masuru Kaneko
Part IV. History and Politics
10. Dealing With Disaster, Peter Duus
11. The Politics of Natural Disaster, Nuclear Crisis and Recovery, Jeff Kingston
12. Friends in Need: 'Operation Tomodachi' and the Politics of US Military Disaster Relief in Japan, Chris Ames and Yuiko Koguchi-Ames
Part V. Recovery and Reconstruction
13. The Economic Fallout: Japan's Post-3/11 Challenges, Kenneth Neil Cukier
14. Ageing Society, Health Issues and Disaster: Assessing 3/11, Junko Otani
15. Thousand-Year Event: Towards Reconstructing Communities, Riccardo Tossani
16. Can Post-3/11 Japan overcome 20 years of drift? Kazuhiko Togo
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Jeff Kingston is Professor of History and Director of Asian Studies at Temple University, Japan. He is the author of Japan's Quiet Transformation (2004) and Contemporary Japan (2011).