RADIATION EXPOSED: A SOCIOLOGICAL INVESTIGATION OF CHERNOBYL
Thirty-three years have passed since the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident. At 1.23 am. on Saturday, April 26, 1986, the No. 4 nuclear reactor exploded, giving origin to a massive plume of radioactive material in Ukraine. To shed some light on the issue, the author searched on-line databases for up-to-date scientific publications. In addition, he employed in-depth qualitative interviews (QIs) via Skype to highlight the life-stories of 16 Ukrainians who were children at the time of the catastrophe. Findings point to a description of Chernobyl as a biblical apocalypse that destroys life. Importantly, the fallout is still perceived as a living reality and not a dark part of the national history. The reason behind this haunting situation is that the state has failed to provide structural changes within a broad framework concerned to alleviate inequity in health, welfare, and human rights. Hence, a possible cost-effective measure could be the embracement of a grassroots perspective on disaster preparedness, mitigation, and management.
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