Moreover, as demonstrated it is human interaction

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Moreover, disasters are further made worse by human
interaction and vulnerability. To put this into context, disaster
reconstruction more often than not deepens the exploitation of the marginalised
(Smith, 2006). After the disaster struck New Orleans with Hurricane Katrina and
the dead became unaccounted for it was found that developers had already began
to look for a new opportunity. The takeover of the developers was compared to a
“developers’ gold rush” (Streitfield, 2005, as cited in Smith, 2006, para 3).  This is a common theme after disasters as
developers seek to rebuild. However, the poor and marginalised often become worse
off after the disaster due to a decrease in wages, an increase in stigma and an
increase in costs for alternative housing (Smith, 2006). Therefore, again there
is a theme of the marginalisation of the poor as the money focused developers
strive to make a profit and as a result the poor are displaced. Smith (2006,
para 16) claims that “There is no such thing as a natural disaster, and the
supposed naturalness of the market is the last place to look…” I agree with
this because as demonstrated it is human interaction as proved which almost
always links up with disasters and often this worsens them, especially in the
case of post Hurricane Katrina.

To sum up, the argument put forward by theorists such
as Squires and Hartman (2006), Smith (2006) and Sheller (2012) that there is no
such thing as a natural disaster. I believe is accurate. Firstly, I am in
support of the claim because if it was not for the marginalisation of the poor
in Haiti and Hurricane Katrina then the damage and death toll could have indeed
been reduced, or even prevented. Moreover, if it was not for the ignorance of
warning given pre-disaster then again, the damage could have been on a much
lower and less damaging scale. Additionally, I believe it is important to take
the stance like theorists Smith (2006) and Sheller (2012) by insisting that
there is no such thing as a natural disaster because through taking this stance
we are able to take responsibility as a society and also take action to
minimise the possibility of such disaster, or hazard happening again.

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On the other hand, it is important to recognise that
there is a weakness to the argument formed by the social scientists,
geographers and disaster scholars in that there is no such thing as a natural
disaster.  In the second half of this discussion
essay I am going to consider nature and humanity as intertwined concepts. I
will explore why it could be argued that there is such thing as a natural
disaster.  I will achieve this by using the
Foot and Mouth disease case which visited the UK in 2001 and again the Haiti
earthquake of 2010 to demonstrate this point of view.


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