The role of religion in local perceptions of disasters: the case of post-tsunami religious and social change in Samoa
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionEnvironmental Hazards: Human and Policy Dimensions. 2018. 10.1080/17477891.2018.1546664
This paper explores religious perceptions of disasters and their implications for post-disaster processes of religious and cultural change. Based on ethnographic fieldwork in post-tsunami Samoa, this study investigates how people in two tsunami-affected villages make sense of the tsunami, its causes and impact based on different Christian understandings: the tsunami as divine punishment or as a sign of the Second Coming. I argue that these different perceptions of the tsunami are used in bringing about or opposing religious and cultural change based on different ideals of continuity and change.