Of the earthquake and other stories: the continuity of change in Pakistan-administered Kashmir

Loureiro, Miguel (2012) Of the earthquake and other stories: the continuity of change in Pakistan-administered Kashmir. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

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Abstract

On October 8th 2005 the villages surrounding Chinati bazaar in Bagh district of
Pakistani-administered Kashmir (PaK) were hit by an earthquake measuring 7.6 on the
Richter scale that affected the lives of more than 3.5 million people in PaK and Khyber
Pukhtunkhwa. In this thesis I attempt to understand, through the stories and narratives
of the people of Chinati bazaar, how they lived through, made sense of, and dealt with
the earthquake and its aftermath. I use participant observation and conversations to tell
the stories of those affected by the earthquake in their own voices as much as possible.
The storytellers of the bazaar lived through two types of events: the earthquake itself
and the post-earthquake rehabilitation and reconstruction process. The latter brought
with it both positive and negative impacts: if, on the one hand, it brought progress and a
new hope that life could be ‘Built Back Better’, on the other hand, it brought a different
type of suffering – one that led to a loss of honour and dignity, resulted in social
upheavals, and led to the exclusion and marginalization of certain groups. In this thesis I
focus on both these ‘events’.

Through these stories I build an argument about post-disaster discourses of change. I
argue that while the narratives of the storytellers of Chinati bazaar posit the earthquake
as a point of rupture in their confabulated stories, from which the collective memory of
the bazaar dates its movement towards becoming modern and global, these changes
have their origins instead in ‘bigger’ stories of modernisation and globalisation that predate
the earthquake and that highlight and emphasise more continuous processes of
change that have been occurring over a longer period of time. In this thesis I analyse
how these two competing discourses of rupture and dramatic change on the one hand,
and slow, continuous change on the other, play out in the lives of the storytellers of
Chinati Bazaar.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Anthropology
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DS History of Asia > DS401 India (Bharat)
D History General and Old World > DS History of Asia > DS401 India (Bharat) > DS483 Local history and description > DS485 Minor kingdoms, states, regions, etc., A-Z > DS485.K23 Kashmir. Jammu and Kashmir > DS485.K27 1947-.
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography > GF051 Environmental influences on humans
Q Science > QE Geology > QE0500 Dynamic and structural geology > QE0521 Volcanoes and earthquakes
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 11 Jan 2013 15:57
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2015 14:49
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/43284

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