socio-cultural profile of hazards. Disaster Archaeology
and the risk assessment of past catastrophic events
the Assessment of Natural Hazards and Proactive Planning
Technical University of Athens)(NTUA), GREECE
Natural and man-induced hazards play an active role in the morphology
and evolution of past, present and.. future ecosystems, both
natural and human. They happen in periodical or chaotic patterns,
varying in frequency, magnitude and functional structure. They
may have also several impacts on the evolution of human civilization
(biological, ecological, environmental, socio-economic, political,
technological, geographical, ideological and cultural results)
that are not always clearly defined, even by the victims or the
generations following the event. These effects could be hidden
in the 'archaeological landscapes', due to diverse parameters.
Furthermore, many 'entities', for example the vulnerability of
ancient societies to environmental or human-made risks, and their
adaptation process to the 'unfamiliar landscapes' formed after
natural disasters are not measurable as other proxy data can
be be (e.g. palaeoclimatic, hydrogeological, palaeoanthropological)
: cultural landscapes, methodology of Disaster Archaeology, markers
of past disasters, disaster psychopathology
Considering the above-mentioned parameters, this paper deals
with : a) the definition of a methodological framework consistent
with the needs and scope of Disaster Archaeology, b) the application
of risk analysis on hazardous phenomena and case studies from
Pleistocene to 19th cent. A.C.E, c) the adoption of pivotal axes
by contemporary mitigation plans and risk management policies
(e.g. landscape evolution, human behavioral patterns, investment
choices and proactive planning of past societies) and d) the
deep understanding of collective shock response, its mechanism
and dynamics via Psychopathology.
This attempt could result in various methodological tools and
analytical parameters. The formation of disaster sequences can
highlight the temporal and spatial distribution of past hazards,
the elaboration of a d-base with this kind of information can
enrich the flexibility of adopted scenarios and the categorization
of affected targets (e.g. human lives, ecosystems' equilibrium,
economic losses, products and services, artifacts, cultural identity,
demographical stability, aesthetic values) can differentiate
the risk assessment efforts. Finally, the analysis of the socio-cultural
profile of hazardous phenomena can increase the potential power
of human collaboration and good will towards serving common goals.
1. THE METHODOLOGICAL
FRAMEWORK OF DISASTER ARCHAEOLOGY
1.1 General approach
an upcoming interdisciplinary science, emerges and establishes
itself as a uniquely significant part of the fields that deal
with hazards, risk management, prevention policies and mitigation
plans all over the world. Increasing possibilities of multifarious
and costly natural and human-induced disasters force both civil
and private sectors to move deeply and heavily into broader approaches
of such events.
Considering that the functions and the results of disasters,
the human response to hazards and the carrying capacity of natural
and human ecosystems do not vary considerably in space and time,
as several constants exist in Nature and Society, modern scientists
can detect the spatial and temporal distribution of hazards.
But firstly, we must define clearly the aims, the scope, the
methodology and the applications of this discipline, which can
provide modern researchers with a huge spectrum of information
concerning hazards and disasters of the past.
Generally speaking, Archaeology of Natural Disasters (Torrence
& Grattan, 2002 ; World, 2002; Byrne, 1997; Blaikie et al.,
1994): a) defines the identity, the impact and the dynamics of
natural hazards into the evolution of human civilization, b)
tries to find and analyze the kinds, frequency and magnitude
of natural hazards that are hidden in the 'archaeological landscapes',
c) searches for the adaptation process in past human societies
and the 'unfamiliar landscapes' formed after natural disasters.
The 'reconstruction' of the natural and cultural landscapes of
the past that were 'used' and modified by humans, is a vital
priority. By studying the natural, built and socio-economic environments
of the past within the integrated approach of human ecosystems,
we can distinguish three main categories (resources, processes
, effects), three pivotal axes (A: flora, fauna, human beings,
minerals, water, land, air, etc.; B: buildings, housing, communication
system, water supply, etc.; C: human activities, education, health,
arts and culture, economic activities, heritage, lifestyles in
general) and three groups of archaeological information (ecofacts,
Nevertheless, the natural hazards could happen in chaotic patterns,
varying in frequency, magnitude or functional structure. They
may also have several impacts on the evolution of human civilization
(biological, ecological, environmental, socio-economic, political,
technological, geographical and cultural results) that are not
always clearly defined, even by the victims or the generations
following the event. Moreover, these effects could be hidden
in the 'archaeological landscapes', due to diverse parameters
(e.g. natural phenomena that constantly change the landscape
and falsify the evidence, applied techniques and methods concerning
the retrieval of information). Finally, many 'entities', for
example the vulnerability of ancient societies to environmental
or human-made risks, and their adaptation process to the 'unfamiliar
landscapes' formed after natural disasters are not measurable
as other proxy data can be (paleoclimatic, hydrogeological, paleoantrhopological
On the other hand, when archaeologists strike a destruction level
during their excavational work, they may be dealing with global
environmental events and cultural fractures, economic instabilities
and movement of peoples, religious revival and suppression or
revolutionary regimes, despair and major death (de Grazia 1984).
But this is a rather rare coincidence. What about local events
or other forms of information, such as the artistic representations,
written sources of past events, indirect testimonies derived
from different communicative subsystems (e.g. language, technology,
warfare, conflicts) and the huge pool of beliefs (oral traditions,
religious rituals, mystical knowledge, ceremonies and daily practices)
1.2 Issues of Terminology
the basic communicative tool in the cases of multidisciplinary
research is the use of terms, as special or technical words or
expressions vary from discipline to discipline, from country
to country or from decade to decade. So, the first step to be
made is to define the main terms that are used by Disaster Archaeology
and a plethora of other scientific fields dealing with disaster
A. Natural Events
and Human Societies
i. Natural Phenomena
Earthquakes, typhoons, torrential rainfalls and volcanic eruptions
are among the environmental activity that occur in Nature, independently
of the human presence on Earth, even if they are considered as
negative inputs of ecosystems' stability.
ii. Natural Hazards
Unexpected or uncontrolled / inevitable natural event of unusual
magnitude, that threatens the life and activities of humans and
has some special characteristics : a) reforms the natural and
cultural landscapes, b) intensifies the degradation's processes,
especially when human factors play a prominent role, c) may provoke
a broad spectrum of losses within human society (http://www.naturalhazards.org/discover/index.html
; Burton et al., 1978). Other factors and human-induced hazardous
events (e.g. wars, famine, desertification, pollution and contamination)
are also included in this category.
Situation derived from a number of parameters (natural, environmental,
socio-economic, cultural, technological), which transform and
influence the response of human societies to hazards, or degree
of loss resulting from a potentially damaging phenomenon.
iv. Exposure to hazards
All the kind of 'items' / values (human lives, material goods,
services, social structures, development rates) that are more
exposed to hazards.
v. Risk = hazard x vulnerability x exposure
Expected losses (lives, injuries, property damage and economic
activity) due to a particular hazard for a given area and reference
Catastrophic event that causes a lot of casualties, injuries
and deaths, destruction of human properties, and disturbs ecosystems'
stability. It may be of natural / environmental, human-induced
/ technological or 'exoterrestrial' origin. "Disaster"
is defined in many ways. The word is derived from the Latin dis
(against) and astrum (stars) , hence, 'the stars are evil'..
Collapse of Human Ecosystems
Long- interval event in human history, both environmental and
cultural. The end of the 13th cent. B.C. and the collapse of
Eastern Mediterranean civilizations is included among them.
The presence of pollutants (substances, noise, radiation, e.t.c.)
in the environment in such a quantity, concentration or duration,
that may cause harm on human health, on the proliferation of
living organisms and on the equilibrium of ecosystems, making
the environment unfit to human uses.
Any kind of pollution that is characterized by pathogens or markers
testifying their presence. Any kind of undesirable or dangerous
changes in the physical, chemical and biological properties of
the air, ground and water, that may threaten the survival of
any form of life on Earth.
Negative impact of pollution on the ecological equilibrium, the
quality of life, the salvage of cultural heritage and the aesthetic
values of human communities.
C. Environmental Entities
The totality of abiotic and biotic elements and parameters within
the environment, that exist in a given geographical area and
have a strong relation to each other. Any natural ecosystem which
is directly or indirectly related to the human presence is called
The environment may be distinguished into : Real / objective
and Perceived. The first can be further analyzed into : a) Geographical
= the physical and biological landscape within which humans live
and act, b) Operational = the space that can provide food and
other sources for the survival of the humans and c) Modified
= the area which shows the visible 'fingerprints' of human action.
Moreover, the Perceived Environment includes the parts of Geographical
and Operational Environment, visible or not, that human society
knows about and make decisions out of them (Butzer,1982).
The 'visualization' of abiotic and biotic elements and parameters
within the environment, that exist in a given geographical area
and have a strong relation to each other, the natural place of
ecosystem's expression, an area, as perceived by people, whose
character is the result of the action and interaction of natural
and / or human factors (Palermo Declaration, 14 - 16 November
2003 ; European Convention, 2000).
D. Cultural Heritage
As cultural heritage can be assigned any kind of evidence related
to human action, any 'product' of human creativeness and expression,
widely accepted for its scientific, historic, artistic and anthropological
value. On the other hand, natural landscapes are also included
in the lists of patrimony objects that must be protected. Issues
of cultural heritage's vulnerability to natural and human-induced
hazards are primely examined by Rescue / Salvage / Conservation
Archaeology, a scientific field which shares several characteristics
with Disaster Archaeology. Terms as integrated conservation and
protection management, preservation, consolidation, anastylosis,
reconstruction, restoration reflect the repeated human attempts,
since Antiquity, to protect and exploit the cultural landscapes
of the past (e.g. Breen & Forsythe, 2001; Brandt & Hassan,
2000; Cleere (ed.), 1984).
Apart from the Greek constitutional framework, international
meetings can provide all the terms needed for further analysis
, e.g. UNESCO General Conference 17 October - 21 November 1972,
Paris (Convention fro the Protection of the World Cultural and
Natural Heritage) & UNIDROIT 1995 Convention, International
Committee for the Management of Archaeological Heritage (ICAHM)
9th General Assembly 1990, Lausanne (Charter on the Protection
and Management of the Archaeological Heritage) , the United Nations
Law of the Sea Convention - 16 November 1994, ICOMOS Charter
1990 (Charter for the Protection and Management of the Archaeological
Heritage), ICOMOS 11th General Assembly, 9 October 1996, Sofia
Bulgaria (Charter on the Protection and Management of Underwater
Cultural Heritage), International Committee on the Underwater
Cultural Heritage (ICUCH), November 1991 & UNESCO / DOLAS
Convention, European Convention on the Protection of the Archaeological
Heritage, 16 January 1992, Valletta , NATURA 2000 network, Directive
92/43/EEC, Rio Convention 1992 e.t.c.
i. Natural Landscapes
Natural features (physical or biological formations), geological
and physiographical formations, natural sites and protected natural
areas (marine parks, national parks, aesthetic forests, protected
monuments of nature, game reserves and hunting reserves, eco-development
areas), along with the four types of biodiversity (genetic, species,
habitat, landscape), are unified under the umbrella of this category.
ii. Cultural Landscapes
Monuments, caves of archaeological interest, groups of buildings,
archaeological sites (open air areas, subterranean, submarine
or coastal), mobile objects, archival material, scientific works,
paleontological & paleoanthropological remains, industrial
sites and landscapes of memory (e.g. languages, oral traditions,
sacred and mythical landscapes), museums and collections, all
are prone to diverse hazards, the impacts of which can demand
extremely expensive restoration programmes.
Any kind of information which is revealed today and concerns
the human life in the past, refers either to the past human ecosystems
or the archaeological landscapes. The structure of the later
is narrower than this of the former, because archaeological landscapes
can be 'frozen' in time (e.g. the fossil landscapes of Akrotiri
and Pompei / Herculaneum) and may represent only some functions
and choices of the society that are registered on the environment
in specific 'coordinates' (tempo, locales) or reflect the cultural
'universe' of a human group during a specific period of time.
On the contrary, past human ecosystems embrace all the parameters,
natural and cultural, that may leave various remains (ecofacts,
artefacts & mentifacts) and interrelate to each other constantly.
This point of view reinforces us to study the whole spectrum
of natural and cultural phenomena, requiring an apt knowledge
ranging from our solar system and Space weather to the microcosm
of living cells, from the climax of historical events to the
vast periods of geological time . Thus, an archaeological system
should include the remains of human civilizations and the environmental
setting, in which hazards have played a significant role since
the very beginning of human history (Ferran Dincauze, 2000; Ashmore
& Knapp (eds), 1999; Hirsch & O' Hanlon (eds),1995; Schama,
1995); Wagstaff (ed.), 1987; Dalton (ed.), 1975).
1.3 The contributions
of various scientific fields
utilizes the contributions of a wide area of scientific fields,
in order to study and interpret the remains of ancient human
cultures. Its objectives combine scientific and humanistic goals,
including the identification and analysis of archaeological systems
to illuminate the long-forgotten cultural processes that created
them. As a multidisciplinary enterprise, Disaster Archaeology
includes attempts to reconstruct the full spectrum of elements
composing a vanished society, its economy, commerce, political
organization, religious beliefs, and mythology, before combining
the existing evidence with complex information retrieved by other
sciences, because the environmental setting is equally important
when we study past catastrophic events.
A great number of fields provide D.A. with the needed information
(Geoarchaeology, Volcanology, Archaeoseismology, Glaciology,
Archaeoastronomy, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoceanography, Palaeohydrology,
Paleontology, Palaeoanthropology, Palaeodemography, Palaeopathology,
Palaeoecology, Archaeozoology, Archaeobotany, Palaeogeography,
Palaeomagnetism, Tree-ring Dating). Respectively, research on
archaeological topics may contribute to the study of past disasters
(Social / Behavioral Archaeology, Landscape & Environmental
Archaeology, Astroarchaeology & Astromythology, Geomythology,
Archaeometry, Study of ancient technologies, Study of communication
systems - e.g. languages, commercial routes, alliances &
wars, exchange patterns, systems of investment & imposition,
religions, economies - , Study of ancient sources of information
- e.g. analysis of written texts, artistic representations, ceremonies
& rites, beliefs & oral traditions). Despite their undoubted
and valuable help, the final evaluation of information remains
a strictly archaeoenvironmental business.
1.4 Main methodological
expressed as periodical phenomena with moderate character or
as sudden, violent, and highly dangerous events, transform the
natural ecosystems, rebuild the landscapes and forge new dynamics
in human societies, by influencing the demographic stability,
the socio-economic profile, the cultural trends and many investment
strategies. There is a quite promising and thought provoking
approach of past disasters as a whole, within the framework of
an holistic analysis, according to which we define every possible
sphere of interaction between the event and its complications
(de Grazia, 2005). The interdependence among these elements could
be viewed through the lenses of the Geosphere, Astrosphere, Electrosphere
and Plasmasphere, Atmosphere, Ecosphere and Biosphere, Theosphere,
Mythosphere, Anthroposphere, Psychosphere, Chronosphere, e.t.c.
All the same, the steps needed to understand the functional structure
of hazards, should be grouped into four nuclei :
A. Change - Periodicity
As natural phenomenon, change can be: a) cyclical , encompassing
the rythmically repeated events (e.g. the seasons of the year,
day and night, tide), b) progressive, when the process lasts
for many centuries exceeding the lifespan of man and few generations
ahead (e.g. the formation of icesheets or the erosion of the
coasts) and c) irregular or chaotic (e.g. storms, volcanic eruptions,
reappearance of diseases).
As cultural phenomenon, change can be distinguished into three
levels: a) the adaptive adjustments (e.g. the phases during Classical
Period), b) the adaptive modification (e.g. the boundary between
Classical and Hellenistic Era) and c) the adaptive transformation
(e.g. the starting point of Industrial Epoch in western societies).
Even if the controversial concept of change within Nature and
Society was always present in the works of intellectual persons
since early Antiquity, modern scholars have more flexible and
interdisciplinary tools to register the multiple faces of past
changes in the archaeoenvironments (Moseley, 1997; Harris &
Thomas (eds), 1991; Einsele et.al. (eds), 1991; Butzer, 1982).
B. Sequences - Layers
The natural ecosystems provide scientists with quite helpful
information, not always easily spotted and retrieved, though.
The sequences of events, which embrace a huge spectrum of space
and time being periodically or chaotically repeated, are imprinted
on a series of elements, structures and markers that share a
common approach, the main concept of stratigraphy(Physical Stratigraphy,
Lithostratigraphy, Chronostratigraphy, Biostratigraphy / Ecostratigraphy,
Chemostratigraphy / Geochemical Stratigraphy, Seismic Stratigraphy,
Cyclostratigraphy, Tephrostratigraphy, Bog Stratigraphy, Magnetostratigraphy).
This concept, along with Taphonomy, is also the main methodological
tool of archaeological investigations referring to the human
ecosystems of the past and their 'fingerprint on the archive
of the Earth'.
Furthermore, the concept of accretion, meaning the visible or
measurable transformation (in quality, quantity, context or composition)
of material due to geological, biochemical and other processes,
for example the formation of annual Ice-Layers, various Lacustrine
Deposits and Geological Formations (e.g. soil formation / pedogenesis
& Loess ), Tree-rings, Deep-Sea Sediments / Sapropels, Coral
Bands and Algal Stromatolites, has enriched the worldwide scientific
efforts with extremely resourceful data banks .
In addition, T-GIS (Temporal Geographic Information System) seems
to share some common functional characteristics not only with
hazard research, but also with archaeological entities, even
the Catastrophist Mythology itself (Laoupi, 2005). Most information
embraced by the myths is spatial and temporal in nature, like
the archaeological entities do, therefore, especially suited
to the basic principles of GIS (Westcott & Brandon, 2000;
Koussoulakou & Stylianidis, 1999; Peuquet, 1994; Langran,1992;
Allen et al., 1990). Moreover, this challenging tool provides
a complete lineage of elements, layers, sets and features concerning
disaster topics, including the evolution of catastrophic phenomena
over time and their state at any moment of human history. Respectively,
often the use of a GIS platform in Cognitive Archaeology and
Anthropology (see http://gis.esri.com/library/userconf/proc02/pap1030/p1030.htm)
is wisely based on the acceptance that mythology is a historic
source for archaeological research. Its use for the interpretation
of mythological and geographical data aims at the deeper understanding
of the mechanisms of continuity in a holistic and unified way.
Modern technologies may be promising enough to provide both the
practical framework and the assessment tools and strategies for
the reevaluation of ancient knowledge.
Finally, a very promising tool is the comparative study of destruction
layers all over the world, either as archaeological stratigraphic
units or as a features of geological sequences. Of course, there
is a necessity for undertaking long field seasons, working on
laboratory's data evaluation, collecting evidence from memory
institutions and communicating with specialists, until we reach
high level of synchronized well-explained sequences.
C. Criteria of disaster
The initial stages of disaster analysis can be found in the texts
of ancient writers (e.g. Homer, Hesiod, Herodotus, presocratic
philosophers, Hippocrates, Thucydides, tragic poets, Plato, Aristotle,
Theophrastus, et al.), where a serious attempt to categorize
the causes of natural and man-induced changes both in the environment
and human societies, is easily recognizable (de Romilly, 1977).
Apart from studying the causes of societal and environmental
collapse in the civilizations of the past (Bintliff, 2002; Fagan,
2000; MacGuire et al, 2000; Schoch & Aquinas, 1999; Dalfes
et al., 1997; La Violette, 1997; Glantz, 1994; Hughes, 1994;
Chambers, 1993; Drews, 1992; Kingston, 1988; Mandelkehr, 1988
& 1987; de Grazia, 1984; Moore et. al., 1984; de Grazia,
1983; Mandelkehr, 1983; Bintliff & Van Zeist, 1982; de Grazia,
1981; Wigley et al., 1981; Hughes, 1975; de Santillana &
von Dechend, 1969; Carpenter, 1966; Velikovsky, 1955 & 1950),
modern approaches differentiate, also, the criteria of disaster
analysis. When refering to ecological degradation, we speak about
a number of indeces, such as the catastrophe of the biotopes,
the exhaustion of natural resources, excessive mass of waste,
various forms of pollution, overexploitation of the environment,
degradation of life's quality, expenses for ecological 'rehabilitation',
e.t.c. (Harris & Thomas, 1991; Hern, 1979). When referring
to societal transformations, we speak about a number of parameters,
such as the restriction of social differentiations, minor specialization
- economic, professional, territorial-, fainter control executed
by central authorities, looser administrative bonds, lesser investment
on the cultural subsystems - monumental architecture, literature,
artistic works-, minor information's flow through several human
groups between the centre and the periphery, looser redistributive
network of resources, minor cooperation among people, minor territorial
sovereignty (Torrence & Grattan (eds), 2002; Tainter, 1988).
So, the vulnerability to natural and human-induced hazards is
the first step before disaster manifestation, and includes three
interdependent parameters (exposure to stress, high potential
risks and limited coping capacity) referring both to the environmental
and cultural status of past human ecosystems.
D. Indices - markers
- proxy data of past disasters in archaeoenvironments
Besides the afore-mentioned methodological framework, the author
of this paper suggests also a more thoroughly organized approach
and evaluation of disaster information, which may be of varied
origin. This information should be formed in five main groups.
The four of them (astrophysical, geological, palaeontological,
biochemical - physical) are beyond the limits of this presentation.
However, the fifth (archaeological - philological and historic-
artistic - mythological) deserves special mention, because past
disasters have either been totally ignored by the majority of
archaeologists or used in an uncritical way without being related
to cultural change. The catalogue is not exhaustive, only some
outstanding examples are given to facilitate a further discussion:
a) Destruction layers may preserve evidence of human occupation
and artefacts from subsequent damage and be unearthed almost
intact. Towns like Akrotiri (Cycladic island of Santorini), Pompeii
and Herculaneum (Italian peninsula), were rapidly engulfed in
voluminous tephra and pyroclastic ejecta. Besides the inescapable
surface exposure and degradation, the buildings and artwork were
buried in their original context, so their spacial and functional
relationships remained largely undisturbed. The thick layer of
reddish ash belonging to Troia IIg is also a well-known example
of archaeological evidence related to a disaster event sometime
in the past (de Grazia, 1984). Respectively, other key examples
are the shipwrecks laid in anaerobic environments (e.g. on the
floor of Black Sea) and sites covered by sand after flooding
(e.g. Itatsuke, Yayoi - Japan, ca 3rd cent. B.C.).
b) Testimonies from ancient scribes may be proved excellent sources
of information. Observations, comments, descriptions and any
other form of indirect information may help in the dating, evaluation
or even identification of past events. Volcanic eruptions (e.g.
the plinian eruption of Vesuvius of A.D. 79 , the pre-Krakatau
eruption of A.D. 535), epidemics (e.g. the Athenian plague during
the first years of Peloponnesian War or the Justinian plague
of the 6th cent. A.C.E, the burst of the Black Death or syphilis'
expansion over Europe), earthquakes, soil liquefaction, tsunami
and landslides (e.g. the famous Helike case of Classical Era
in N. Peloponnesus, other seismic events in ancient circum-mediterranean
area) and extraterrestrial events and impacts (e.g. the Supernova
explosion of A.D. 1054 or various sky events described by the
Chinese archaeoastronomers), all were covered by the ancient
'disaster reporters' . Respectively, observations made by indigenous
people or described by foreign travellers (e.g. the impact of
the hydroclimatic phenomenon El Nioo / ENSO on the ecosystems'
equilibrium in S.W. America), and annual or regularly registered
inventories of products and goods (e.g. cultivation of crops
and production of wine in Pharaonic Egypt or in S. France during
the Middle Ages) may reflect the climatic and environmental conditions
in the archaeoenvironments. Finally, birth's & death's archives
kept by local organized communities, may serve as palaeodemographical
indices, which can tell us about the average age of death or
the causes of death, highlighting many neglected social parameters.
c) Oral traditions
and mythological cycles from all over the world, are full of
information concerning past disasters. The Indian legends of
N. America, the tales of Aborigines in the Southern Hemisphere,
the secrets of the shamans in African tribes and, especially,
the circum-mediterranean mythology challenge modern researchers..
The Mayan prophecies and the Aztecs' cosmology, the myth of Atlantis,
the N.W. European sagas (e.g. Edda), the Sibylline Oracles, the
epic narrations (e.g. the Homeric Epos in Greece, Mahabharata
and other philological remnants of the civilization along Indus'
valley), histories about gods, heroes and legendary journeys
(e.g. Aristaios as benefactor of the first inhabitants of Cyclades,
Argonautic Expedition, Hercules' deeds, Titanomachy & Gigantomachy,
Hephaestos' fall from heaven, Noah's and Deucalion's Flood, Phaethon)
reflect the times when sky, earth and water were in upheaval.
d) The migration of symbols reflects also the universal 'language'
of disasters. Crisis cult, various ceremonies, specific colours
(e.g. red and black as symbols of dark powers), numbers and rituals
(e.g. the mystic fires of Tamaatea in New Zealand), ill-omened
days in ancient calendars, new forms of worship or disorder in
religious structures, adoption of curious symbols (e.g. swastika
and birds as symbols of comets, dragons, serpents, dogs), deities
with chtonic character (Seth, Hecate) act as archetypal images
of the collective unconscious.
e) Even the artistic representations may cover a wide range of
information, from coins (e.g. the Keian coins of Hellenistic
Era with the Dog-star Sirius on them) to frescoes (e.g.the volcanic
eruption of ca 6.200 B.C. on the mural painting of _atal Hüyük)
and from rock art (e.g. the 11th cent. Indian petroglyphs of
NW. USA) to paintings and book's sketches (e.g. the lethal earthquake
and tsunami that stroke Lisbon on November 1, 1755 with 60.000
f) Finally, there are many traces of catastrophic events directly
or indirectly found in the archaeological record. Some of them
are the isochronous destruction of settlements in the same latitude,
the sudden and unexpected abandonment of flourishing landscapes,
the sudden increase of storehouses within settlements, changes
in the management of water supplies, prevalence of local goods
and items instead of a previously active trade contacts, existence
of unburied corpses or offhand burials, items and architectural
structures thrown down and dispersed, evidence of severe fire,
flood or tsunami, palaeopathological evidence, sudden technological
changes, massive movements of people (e.g. the Sea People at
the end of the 12th cent. B.C. or the tribes which migrated from
the Asian steppes to Western Europe after the 4th cent. A.D.).
2. RISK ASSESSMENT
OF PAST CATASTROPHIC EVENTS
There are many reasons why it has proved very difficult to obtain
a consensus on the meaning of the terms 'disaster' and 'catastrophe'.
Firstly, the disciplinary orientations restrict a unanimous approach.
Some scholars regard them as synonymous, while others consider
them as descriptive of different levels of impact. Thousands
of titles relating to hazard assessment exist already worldwide
causing interminable discussions.. Instead of imposing a numerical
threshold on disaster, not a particularly successful practice,
we propose an alternative approach.
i. Spatial and temporal
The chosen areas that are the case studies of hazard analysis,
are determined according to their coordinates, their geographical
setting and the period of time during which the research is referred
A quite long catalogue of natural and man-induced hazards is
always a useful tool, in order to understand the variety of risks,
which the archaeoenvironments were prone to (e.g. earthquakes,
volcanic eruptions, impacts, electromagnetic storms / solar tsunami,
tsunami & flooding, sea-level fluctuations, soil liquefaction,
terrestrial or submarine landslides, submersion or emersion of
land, rapid climatic changes, drought & heat, avalanches
& rockfalls, snow storms, torrential rainfall, wild landfires,
hailstorms, lightning, hurricanes, salinization & desertification,
soil erosion & sedimentation, decrease in number of species
within local ecosystems, expansion of marshes, epidemics, extended
migrations of people, use of weapons for mass destruction, wars,
dwelling in hazardous locations, pollution & contamination,
famine, catastrophe of food resources, overpopulation). There
is also another group of hazards, especially human-induced (e.g.
industrial, technological or natural triggered by human action)
that refer to modern landscapes, either natural or cultural.
They must be equally studied, if we want to present a more holistic
view of hazard analysis.
iii. Hazard Evaluation
According to the availability of information , we can define
a number of escalated or measurable parameters: Predictability
of the event, Probability of the event, Reversibility, Magnitude,
Intensity, Duration, Frequency, Targets affected (human losses,
injuries,crops, goods and holdings, facilities and services,
infrastructure, buildings, landscapes, biodiversity, cultural
universe), Severity of Consequences.
iv. Evaluation of
According to the availability of information , we can define
a number of escalated or measurable parameters: Carrying Capacity
of the area (ecological & anthropological), Differentiation
of stress (ecological, cultural, biological), Determination of
risk level (environmental, ecological, technological, anthropological
/ biological, cultural, economic, political). In other words,
the number of people exposed to danger, the existence of social
or other groups of people prone to specific hazard, the physical
/ mental conditions of humans, the possibility of quick recovery
and the parameters that block it, the alternatives and the choices,
are some of the criteria , which may be further a nalyzed in
a systematic way.
v. Post shock Evaluation
According to the availability of information , we can define
a number of escalated or measurable parameters: Visble or invisible
results, Direct or indirect results, Short term or long term
results , Permanent, transient or periodical results.
vi. Hazard Management
The reaction of ancient population to crises may differ considerably:
have the possibility to avoid the risk, have the possibility
to control the risk, have the possibility to reduce the consequences
of hazards, have the possibility to reduce the likelihood of
their occurence, have the possibility to transfer the risk, fully
vii. Adaptive Processes
Ancient societies (nomadic, pastoral, agricultural, nautical,
industrial, other, mixed) may have chosen diverse methods and
ways of proactive planning, mitigation and adaptation: establish
a suitable administrative and legislative framework in order
to protect the environment and the population from hazards, improve
management policies, invest on long term values (e.g. ecosystems'
equilibrium, quality of life, human lives versus economic profit,
prevention through education), increase storage capacity, keep
a stable transportation network, enhance adaptability to landscapes'
evolution over time, present alternative scenarios for the day
after, acquire a profound knowledge of nature's mechanisms and
environment's potential, tie the bonds between the stronger and
weaker members of the society, protect the targets the most easily
affected by hazards, overcome political, religious, phyletic
or other restrictions when facing hazards, adopt new technologies,
ideas or ways of help to overcome a disaster, show a more flexible
and adaptable profile toward crises.
In general, the 'lifecycle' of hazards includes several situations,
dynamically interrelated: Prevention- Preparedness - Response-
Mitigation - Recovery. Even if there were not functioning the
first two, ancient societies had to deal with the rest crucial
3. THE SOCIO-CULTURAL
PROFILE OF HAZARDS
The cross-cultural study of the response by human groups to major
environmental disruptions brings together experts in order to
assess the damage potential of various types of natural and man-made
Footprints of early hominids preserved in volcanic ash demonstrate
that humans lived and interacted with natural hazards since the
dawn of time. In every person's lifetime, at least one natural
hazard will likely have some impact on their life. Apart from
causing severe damage, hazards may provoke irreversible reactions
and reform the human behavioral patterns, too.
The study of hazards' historic evolution has shown that the cultural
patterns and networks are interdependent. Moreover, the characteristics,
distribution, and complexity of Earth's cultural mosaics, all
involve the parameter of disaster in their functional processes.
Apart from influencing totally the course of human history (e.g.
acute climatic episodes, epidemics, cosmic impacts), disasters
had also influenced the division and control of Earth's surface.
The forces of cooperation and conflict among people, the changes
that occur in the use of resources and the migration of human
populations had modified the natural and cultural landscapes
of the past in a mutual way. Physical systems affect human societies
and human actions modify the physical environment.
A disaster-induced crisis may cause direct and indirect anthropological
and biological results. Severe climatic and environmental changes
had triggered human evolution and physical factors seems to have
played an important role on Neanderthals' disappearance. Sudden
deaths of a wide part of ancient population shook the demographic
stability and severe injuries altered the social equilibrium
within society. The transformation of natural ecosystems (e.g.
reduced or increased resources' accessibility) and the geographical
alterations (e.g. coastal evolution) caused changes in settlement
patterns, environmental use and concept, migrations and wars.
Respectively, major environmental events (e.g. cosmic impacts
or giant tsunami) modified the face of whole areas. Other periodically
expressed phenomena (e.g. El Nioo & Monsoons) had long-term
impact on the socioeconomic structures of local communities and
crisis cult was always of critical importance within ancient
Of course, disaster dynamics had proved to be so powerful that
they changed the course of human history. Mighty empires collapsed
and vanished or shocked irreversibly. Wide-ranging case studies
have shown that natural factors triggered the fall of well organized
social systems when their normal coping mechanism failed. Drought
or flooding, epidemic diseases like plague, syphilis and smallpox,
tremendous volcanic eruptions and meteorites, tsunami and earthquakes
influenced the circum-mediterranean civilizations (Saharo-sahel
cultures, Iberian, Egyptian, Hittite, Mesopotamian, Minoan &
Mycenean, Etruscan, Roman), the N.W. European, Asian (Harrapan,
Chinese, Oceanian) and American (Mesoamerican & Andean) civilizations.
Disaster research is a relatively new area of interest among
archaeologists, psychologists and other social scientists. The
more recent trend treats disasters as social phenomena and tries
to identify the underlying psychological aspects ( Eranen &
Liebkind, 1993). The prevalence of psychological symptoms and
/ or disorders (Rubonis & Bickman, 1991) during and after
extreme environmental events may show a common profile among
different cultures. Firstly, people use to look backward to a
prior more fortunate time when humans lived happily by divine
grace (e.g. the races of Hesiod, the blissful Atlantis kingdom).
Prudence, good behavior and moral integrity are also considered
as 'remedies' against the reappearance of the dreadful event.
Even the gods and many heroic figures battle against the evil
forces which want world's upheaval (e.g. Egyptian Osiris &
Seth, Greek Olympians against the Titans and the Giants, the
Aztec god of winds and creation Quetzalcoatl & the solar
deity Nanahuatzin against the destruction's god).
On the other side, the 'fleet or stay' dilemma was always present
when people was familiar to a specific risk, or the hazard was
infrequent or socially controlled. People seemed to be willing
to take quite high risks in the case of rare events. Building
on flood plains and steep slopes, under the shadow of volcanoes,
or in earthquake prone zones are good examples. Another interesting
issue is the mechanism of return to homeland. In some cases societies
recover and stay in the same environmental setting, while others
abandon the initial geographical area for good . This parameter
reflects the concept of perception. The perception of hazards
is critically important to how a community reacts to a forcing
mechanism (Torrence & Grattan, 2002; Bryant, 1991). Delayed
recovery may be attributed to the absence of clear perception
(e.g. the case of Pompei & Herculaneum on August 25th, A.D.
79 / the catastrophic Lake Nyos gas explosion on August 21st,
Generally speaking, complex societies deal with follow-on effects
less flexibly than the simpler ones. Archaeologists detected
relative cultural stability in the cases of prehistoric Costa
Rica and Papua New Guinea. Particular social settings create
vulnerable communities, the findings of which are echoed in the
archaeological record, as the new behavioral traits or material
culture may reflect a total replacement of a culture, a societal
collapse, or, simply, the abandonment of local settlements.
The positive response to hazardous phenomena may vary considerably.
During the aftermath of catastrophe or environmental change,
technological innovations are illustrated (e.g. agriculture after
Younger Dryas crisis, obsidian trade, metallurgy), new lands
discovered (e.g. evolution of the waterways and early human migrations,
the trips of Vikings to Northern Seas, the European expansion
after the Little Ice Age), new subsistence strategies and more
efficient techniques were adopted (e.g. the case of Moche Culture
in Peru). In essence, crises use to stimulate rather than devastate
the cultural traits of a society. The emplacement of nutrient-rich
volcanic tephras and alluvial soils counterbalanced the spread
of malaria in marshy areas, the dislocation of city's activities
caused by coastal regression or transgression (e.g. ancient Mediterranean
harbours, Piraeus, Thessaloniki, Ephesos, Oiniades or fertile
marshy areas like Marathon) and the repeated repair attempts
after the experience of severe effects.
Some human groups are extremely adaptable in the face of disasters
, being more tolerant of environmental perturbations than others.
Two very compelling paradigms arise from the ancient Greek history.
In spite the fact that individual inhabitants were highly vulnerable
to ecologically or socially induced stress and catastrophe, poleis
were at the same time remarkably resilient. The basic mechanics
behind this phenomenon may be the diversification and redistribution
of both populations and resources (Mac Kil, 2004). Individual
case studies of wandering cities testify the afore-mentioned
argument. Myous' harbor in the early 5th cent. B.C. was an active
nautical centre with a capacity of 200 ships. Alluviation in
the Great Maeander graben had transformed it into a marsh by
the 1st cent. A.D. Then, local inhabitants pressed out by encroaching
malarial fens, moved to Miletos and adapted completely to this
new environmental and social framework. On the coastal plain
of Achaia, between the Selinous and Kerynites rivers, Helike,
on the southern coast of the Gulf of Korinth, provided archaeologists
and other archaeoenvironmental scientists with intriguing testimonies.
So far, clearly marked occupation horizons reflect the Bronze
Age, Archaic and Classical, Roman and Byzantine settlements in
this highly unstable environment (high rates of sedimentation,
active seismicity of Helike fault, phenomena of liquefaction,
uplift and subsistence of Helike delta). Although a large portion
of Helike's population died after the earthquake and the tsunami
of 373 B.C., the higher areas of the polis continued to be uded
during Hellenistic Era. But even if the subsistence patterns
continued to exist for a long time spread into the whole area,
the bond between the physical site and polis' integrity as a
prominent political entity (meeting place of the Achaian koinon)
ceased to exist.
We come upon another highly important parameter. Survivor Mentality
may also be a crucial factor in community's recovery from a disaster.
Ancient writers describe profound social unease, panic and eschatological
beliefs (Armaggedon and the end of the world). The descendants
recall the events for a long period of time. In fact, Sigmund
Freud (1913) established the theory of collective trauma, according
to which underlying catastrophic incidents continue to be suppressed
by the subconscious of human race, creating neurotic symptoms
and dire psychological effects. On the contrary, Immanuel Velikovsky
(1982) speculated that mankind suffers from a neurosis of collective
amnesia caused by universal traumas. Other researchers have developed
intriguing models of sudden evolution of mankind which gave birth
to Homo sapiens schizotypus, a human stage that had the memory
of many disasters (de Grazia, 1983 and 2005).
Even today, psychiatric reactions to hazardous situations have
not received sufficient attention, perhaps because it is widely
believed that human beings can endure any kind of extreme stress..
Apart from Acute Stress Disorder (ASD) with its symptoms that
can occur within four weeks of the traumatic event, Post-traumatic
stress disorder (PTSD) with symptoms that are present for at
least one month, is also included among the reactions and may
be acute or chronic, affecting varying rates (2% - 50%) of population
(NSW Institute of Psychiatry and Centre for Mental Health , 2000).
Separation from family, loss of all belongings and displacement
provoke reactions merely somatic or senti-mental (phobias, mistrust
of strangers, life threat , feelings of hopelessness, personality
disorders, mental illness, memory and concentration problems,
amnesia, horror and nightmares) along with long-term effects
(e.g. high rates of accidents or various forms of addiction).
Moreover, biological, social, political and economic factors
seem to influence the profile of vulnerability within human groups.
Females experience stronger and more lasting reactions, older
adults are at greater risk than the children and adolescents.
Married or parental status seems to be aggravated after disasters.
Finally, hazard preparedness after previous disasters seems to
facilitate the resilience and recovery attempts. Other factors
that influence the disaster profile are the existence of ethnic
minorities, living already in a highly disrupted or traumatized
community or having bad psychiatric predisposition (Arata et.al.,
2000; Bromet et al., 2000; Bland et. al., 1996; Ursano et al.,
1994; Wilson & Raphael, 1993; Austin, 1992; Palinkas et al.,
1992; Breslau, 1990; Canino et al. 1990; Hutchins & Norris
1989; Farber, 1967). Unfortunately, the above-mentioned criteria
are not yet estimated in the existed studies of past disasters,
though they open new ways of approach.
Another issue which deserves special mention, is the period of
ecological and social recovery, as well as the heavy responsibilities
carried out by different agents. During Antiquity there was not
any accident resembling to the Chernobyl worst nuclear reactor
accident (April 25th & 26th, 1986) in the former USSR (now
Ukraine) or the wreck of Exxon Valdez in the waters of Bligh
Reef - Alaska (March 23rd, 1989). The first case caused untold
suffering to many generations of population (acute radiation
syndrome, deterministic, genetic & stochastic health effects),
as for the second, it caused an oil spill area believed to contain
more than 3.000 sites of archaeological and historical significance.This
was a very special occasion which taught humans that cultural
resources (human lives and cultural landscapes) are not renewable,
because they cannot recover in the same sense of biological resources.
Presently, cultural heritage sites around the world are inadequately
protected from rapidly changing environmental and social conditions.
Safeguarding these areas from hazards is extremely important
as they represent unique and irreplaceable resources.
Not surprisingly, heritage landscapes are today acknowledged
as irreplaceable sources with outstanding universal value. Protecting
the natural and human ecosystems means consequently defending
cultural diversity and human dignity. This worldwide need is
now openly expressed by the international scientific community
and the majority of nations, organizations, agents and local
Moreover, environmental changes, whether man-made or natural,
contemporary or past, have always involved a complex interplay
of physical, chemical and biological processes of the Earth..
All scientific activities should coordinate in the best possible
way, in order to insure the contribution of research to public
awareness and sensitivity towards the multi-dimensional consequences
of disasters (human and material loss, economic and environmental
after-effects, cultural loss).
On the other hand, understanding when, where, why, and how natural
hazards occur is the first step in minimizing their impacts on
our lives. And a great deal of information regarding past disasters
and after-shock cultural readjustments may turn into a very useful
tool for modern scientists in order to plan effective mitigation
strategies. The 'natural' and the 'human' are inextricably bound
together in hazardous situations, thus, Disaster Archaeology
should hold a leading position in hazard assessment, having as
pivotal direction not only the study of the disastrous events
of the past, but also the environmental, physical, mental and
social shocks after them.
I owe thanks to Nicki Goulandris (Goulandris Museum of Natural
History - GAIA, Centre for Environmental Research & Education)
, who inspired me in various ways. Later on, Professor Alfred
de Grazia, one of the worldwide leading personalities in Disaster
Studies, opened my horizons to new perspectives. I also want
to give special thanks to Professors George Ferentinos (Marine
Geology and Physical Oceanography, University of Patras) and
Stavros Papamarinopoulos (Applied Geophysics, University of Patras),
for their support in word and action. Finally, Professors George
Tsakiris (Director of the Center for the Assessment of Natural
Hazards and Proactive Planning - NTUA) and Taxiarchis Papadopoulos
(Applied Geophysics, University of Athens) were willing to broader
the scientific boundaries of hazard matters including Disaster
Archaeology into their scientific research . It has been a delight
to collaborate with them on disaster topics.
Links to other
now available from Amazon, Barnes
and Noble and other major bookstores. It can be also ordered
by contacting directly Aston
Allen, K., Green, S. & Zubrow E. (eds.) (1990). Interpreting
Space. GIS and Archaeology. London: Taylor & Francis.
Ashmore, Wendy & Knapp B. A. (eds) (1999). Archaeologies of Landscape. Contemporary Perspectives. Massachussets, U.S.A. &
Oxford, London: Blackwell Publishers.
Arata, C., Picou, J., Johnson, G., & McNally T. (2000). Coping with technological disaster:
An application of the conservation of resources model to Exxon
Valdez oil spill.
Journal of Traumatic Stress vol. 11, pp. 23-39.
Austin, L.S. (ed.) (1992). Responding to Disaster: A guide for
mental health professionals. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric
Bintliff, J.L. & Van Zeist W. (eds) (1982). Palaeoclimates, palaeoenvironments
and human communities in the Eastern Mediterranean region in
Oxford: British Archaeological Reports, International Series
Bintliff, J. L. (2002). Time,
Process and Catastrophism in the study of Mediterranean alluvial
history: a review.
World Archaeology vol 33, pp. 417 - 453.
Blaikie, P., Cannon, T., Davies, I. & Wisner B. (1994) At Risk : Natural Hazards, People's
Vulnerability and Disasters. London:
Bland, S., O'Leary, E., Farinaro, E., & Trevisan M. (1996).
effects of natural disasters.
Psychosomatic Medicine vol. 58, pp. 18-24.
B____ ___ E______ - _______ E_____ M_________ Y_______, ( 28
- 29 & 31 M____ 2002): ______ N____ ___ ___ ________ ___
A__________ ___ __ _____ ___ ____________ K__________. ________
I' - _______ B', A____.
Brandt, St. A. & Hassan F. (2000). Dams and Cultural Heritage Management. Final Report. World Commission
on Dams, Cape Town, South Africa.
Breen, C. & Forsythe W. (2001). Management and Protection of the Maritime Cultural
Resource in Ireland.
Coastal Management 29, pp. 41 - 51.
Breslau, Naomi. (1990). Stressors:
Continuous and discontinuous.
Journal of Applied Social Psychology vol. 20(20), pp. 1666-1673.
Bromet, E., Goldgaber, D., Carlson, G., Panina, N., Golovakha,
E., Gluzman, S., et al. (2000). Children's well-being 11 years after the Chernobyl
of General Psychiatry vol. 57, pp. 563-571.
Bryant, E. (1991). Natural
Cambridge University Press.
Burton, I., Kates, R.W. & White G.F. (1978). The Environment as Hazard. New York: Oxford University
Butzer, K. W. (1982). Archaeology
as Human Ecology: Method and Theory for a Contextual Approach. Cambridge: Cambridge University
Byrne, D. (1997). The
Archaeology of Disasters.
Public History Review 6, pp. 17 - 29.
Canino, G., Bravo, M., Rubio-Stipec, M., & Woodbury M. (1990).
The impact of disaster
on mental health: Prospective and retrospective analyses. International Journal of Mental
Health vol. 19, pp. 51-69.
Carpenter, Rh. (1966). Discontinuity
in Greek Civilization.
The J.H. Gray Lectures for 1965. Cambridge: At the Clarendon
Chambers, F.M. (ed.) (1993). Climatic
Change and Human Impact on the Landscape. London: Chapman and Hall.
Cleere, H. (ed.) (1984). Approaches
to the Archaelogical Heritage.
A Comparative Study
of World Cultural Resource Management Systems. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Dalfes, N.H. Kukla, G. & Weiss H. (eds) (1997). Third Millennium B.C. Climate
Change and Old World Collapse.
NATO ASI Series, I : Global
Vol. 49. New York /Berlin / Heidelberg: Springer Verlag.
Dalton, G.E. (ed. ) (1975). The
Study of Agricutlural Systems.
International Ideas, Philadelphia. Esp.: G. van Dyne & Z.
systems models and modelling: an overview", pp. 23-106.
de Grazia, Al. (1981). Chaos
and Creation. Princeton,
London and Bombay: Metron Publications.
de Grazia, Al. (1983). Homo
Schizo I & II.
Princeton: Metron Publications.
de Grazia, Al. (1983). The
Lately Tortured Earth.
New Jersey: Metron Publications.
de Grazia, Al. (1984). The
Burning of Troy.
New Jersey: Metron Publications.
de Grazia, Al. (2005). The
Iron Age of Mars. Speculations on a Quantavolution. Naxos, Greece: Metron Publications
/ Eumetron .
de Romilly, Jacqueline (1977). The
Rise and Fall of States According to Greek Authors. Michigan: The University of
de Santillana, G. & von Dechend Hertha (1969 /1983). Hamlet's Mill: An Essay on Myth
and the Frame of Time.
Boston: Gambit Inc. / Second paperback edition, D.R. Godine.
Drews, R. (1992). The
end of the Bronze Age: changes in warfare and the catastrophe
ca. 1200 B.C. Princeton,
N.J. : Princeton University Press.
Einsele, G., Ricken, W. & Seilacher A. (eds.) (1991). Cycles and Events in Stratigraphy. Berlin: Springer-Verlag.
Eranen , L & Liebkind K. (1993). Coping with disaster: the helping behavior of
communities and individuals.
In: Wilson J.P. & Raphael B. ( eds.) International handbook of traumatic stress syndromes.
New York: Plenum,
Fagan, Br. (2000). Floods,
Famine and Emperors : El Nino and the Fate of Civilization. New York: Basic Books.
Farber , IJ. (1967). Psychological
aspects of mass disasters.
Journal of the National Medical Association vol. 59, pp. 340-5.
Ferran Dincauze, Dena (2000). Environmental
Archaeology. Principles and Practice. Massachusetts: Cambridge University Press.
Freud, S. (1913). Totem
und Tabu: Einige Übereinstimmungen im Seelenleben der Wilden
und der Neurotiker.
First published as a series of four articles. In English : Strachey,
J. (transl. & ed.) (1990). Totem
and Taboo: Resemblances Between the Mental Lives of Savages and
Neurotics. The Standard
Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud
Series. New York: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Glantz, M.H. (ed.) (1994). Drought
follows the plow.
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Halstead, P. & O'Shea J. (eds.) (1989). Bad Year Economics: Cultural Responses to Risk
and Uncertainty. New Directions in Archaeology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Harris, D. & Thomas K. (eds.) (1991). Modelling Ecological Change. London: Institute of Archaeaology, University
Hays, W.W. (ed.) (1981). Facing
Geologic and Hydrologic Hazards.
Earth - Science Consideration. Geological Survey Professional
Paper 1240-B. Washington D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office.
Hern, D. F. (ed.) (1979). Analysis
of Ecological Systems.
Columbus - Ohio: Ohio State University Press.
Hirsch, E. & O' Hanlon M. (eds) (1995). The Anthropology of Landscape : Perspectives
on Place and Space.
Oxford: At the Clarendon Press.
Hughes, D.J. (1975). Ecology
in Ancient Civilizations.
New Mexico: University of New Mexico Press.
Hughes, D.J. (1994). Pan's
Travail: Environmental Problems of the Ancient Greeks and Romans. Baltimore / London: The John
Hopkins University Press.
Hutchins, G. & Norris F. (1989). Life change in the disaster recovery period. Environment and Behavior vol.
21, pp. 33-56.
K_____ - A_______, A_______ (1988). E_______ ___ _________ _________
___ ___ ________ ___ ____________. A____: E__. ________.
Kingston, J. (1988). The
Weather of 1780's over Europe.
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Koussoulakou, A. & Stylianidis E. (1999). The use of GIS for the visual exploration of
archaeological spatio-temporal data. Cartography and Geographic Information Science
26, pp. 152-160.
La Violette, P. A. (1983). Galactic
Explosions, Cosmic Dust Invasions and Climatic Change. Portland, Oregon: Ph.D. Thesis,
Portland State University.
La Violette, P. A. (1997). Earth
Under Fire. Humanity's Survival of the Apocalypse. Alexandria, VA / Niskayuna,
New York: Starlane Publications.
Langran, G. (1992). Time
in Geographic Information Systems. London: Taylor & Francis.
Laoupi, Amanda (2005). Catastrophist
Mythology. The Methodological Framework. International Conference on ''THE ATLANTIS
HYPOTHESIS: SEARCHING FOR A LOST LAND', 11 - 13 July 2005, Island
of Melos, Greece. In print .
MacGuire, W.J., Griffiths, D.R., Hancock, P.L. & Stewart
I.S.(eds) (2000). The
Archaeology of Geological Catastrophes. The Geological Society Special Publications,
MacKil, Emily (2004). Wandering Cities : Alternatives to Catastrophe in the Greek Polis.
AJA vol. 108, pp.
493 - 516.
Mandelkehr, M.M. (1983). An
integrated model for an Earth wide event at 2.300 B.C. Part I
" The archaeological evidence ". SIS Review vol. V, pp. 77 - 95 .
Mandelkehr, M.M. (1987). An
integrated model for an Earth wide event at 2.300 B.C. Part II
" Climatology, Chronology and Catastrophism ". SIS Review vol. IX, pp. 34 -
Mandelkehr, M.M. (1988). An
integrated model for an Earth wide event at 2.300 B.C. Part III
" The geological evidence, Chronology and Catastrophism
". SIS Review
vol. X, pp. 11 - 22.
Moore, J.B., Abery, J. & James P.J. (1984). Global Catastrophes : new evidence
from Astronomy, Biology
and Archaeology. SIS Review vol. VI, pp. 89 - 91.
Moseley, M. (1997). Climate,
culture and punctuated change : new data, new challenges. The Review of Archaeology vol.
18, pp. 19 - 27.
NSW Institute of Psychiatry and Centre for Mental Health (2000).
Disaster Mental Health
North Sydney: NSW Health.
Oliver-Smith, A. (1996). Anthropological
Research on hazards and disasters. Annual Review of Anthropology vol. 25, pp. 303
Palinkas, L., Russell, J., Downs, M., & Petterson J. (1992).
in stress, coping, and depressive symptoms after the Exxon Valdez
oil spill. Journal
of Nervous and Mental Disease vol. 180, pp. 287-295.
Peiser, B.J., Palmer, Tr. & Baily M.E. (eds) (1998). Natural Catastrophes During Bronze
Age Civilizations. Archaeological, geological, astronomical and
Oxford, England: BAR International Series 728.
Petak, W.J. & Atkisson A.A. (1982). Natural Hazard Risk Assessment and Public Policy
: Anticipating the Unexpected.
New York: Springer Verlag.
Peuquet, D. ( 1994). Its
about time: a conceptual framework for the representation of
temporal dynamics in geographic information systems. Annals of the Association of
American Geographers vol. 84, pp. 441-461.
Rubonis, AV & Bickman L. (1991). Psychological impairment in the wake of disaster:
The disaster-psychopathology relationship. Psychological Bulletin vol. 108, pp. 384-399.
Schama, S. (1995). Landscape
and Memory. London:
Schoch, R. & Aquinas R. (1999). Voices of the Rocks : A Scientific Look at Catastrophes
and Ancient Civilizations.
New York: MacNally.
Tainter, J. (1988). The
Collapse of Complex Societies. New Studies in Archaeology. Cambridge : Cambridge University
Torrence, R. & Grattan J. (eds) (2002). Natural Disasters and Cultural Change. London and New York: One World
Archaeology 45, Routledge.
Ursano, R.J., McCaughey, B.G &. Fullerton, C.S. (eds) (1994).
Individual and community
responses to trauma and disaster. London: Cambridge University Press.
Velikovsky, I. (1950). Worlds
in Collision. New
York: Mac Millan (April) and Doubleday Books (June).
Velikovsky, I. (1955) . Earth
in Upheaval. New
York: Doubleday Books.
Velikovsky, I. (1982). Mankind
in amnesia. New York:
Wagstaff, J.M. (ed.) (1987). Landscape
and Culture: geographical and archaeological perspectives. Oxford / New York: Blackwell.
Westcott, K. & Brandon R. ( 2000). Practical applications of GIS for Archaeologists. London: Taylor & Francis.
Wigley, T.M.L., Ingram, M.J. & Farmer G. (1981). Climate and History: Studies
in Past Climates and their Impact on Man. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Wilson, J.P. & Raphael B.( eds.) (1993). International handbook of traumatic stress syndromes. New York: Plenum.
Wittkower, R (1997). Allegory
and the migration of symbols.
London: Thames & Hudson.
World, Arch (2002). Archaeology
of Natural Disasters.
London and New York: Taylor and Francis Books Ltd.
Zimmerman, M. et al (eds) (1992). Environmental Philosophy. London: Prentice Hall.
1963-2007 George Pararas-Carayannis / all rights reserved / Information
on this site is for viewing and personal information only - protected
by copyright. Any unauthorized use or reproduction of material
from this site without written permission is prohibited.
from Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other major bookstores. A signed
by the author copy can be also ordered by contacting directly
by email Aston
Miscellaneous Non-technical Writings