A Cultural Analysis of Conflicts in Industrial Disaster

November 1987 (VOL. 5, NO. 3)

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Industrial disasters create occasions for the eruption of multiple conflicts among stakeholders. Victims\\' perspective on these conflicts has received little research attention in the past. Understanding these conflicts can lead to insights into the political nature of such disasters, and aid in developing more humane responses to them. This paper provides a cultural analysis of social conflicts that emerged in the Bhopal tragedy. It examines victims\\' subjective understanding of the tragedy and associated conflicts by analyzing a demonstration march by them. Victims\\' understanding of conflicts is significantly different from that of the government that supposedly represents them. This finding has important policy implications, and warrants further research on conflicts in industrial disasters.