Stages of Emergency
Cold War Nuclear Civil Defense
AUTHOR: Davis, Tracy C.
PUBLISHER: Duke University Press
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Stages of Emergency covers public education campaigns and school programs--such as the ubiquitous "duck and cover" drills--meant to heighten awareness of the dangers of a possible attack, the occupancy tests in which people stayed sequestered for up to two weeks to simulate post-attack living conditions as well as the effects of confinement on interpersonal dynamics, and the British first-aid training in which participants acted out psychological and physical trauma requiring immediate treatment. Davis also brings to light unpublicized government exercises aimed at anticipating the global effects of nuclear war. Her comparative analysis shows how the differing priorities, contingencies, and social policies of the three countries influenced their rehearsals of nuclear catastrophe. When the Cold War ended, so did these exercises, but, as Davis points out in her perceptive afterword, they have been revived--with strikingly similar recommendations--in response to twenty-first-century fears of terrorists, dirty bombs, and rogue states.
PUBLICATION DATE: 6/27/2007
CATEGORY: History, Political Science