Accepted paper:

Netting a new life, netting a good life? Changes wrought by 3.11 on Miyagi fisheries households, from autonomous individuals to cooperative partners

Authors:

Alyne Delaney (Aalborg University)

Paper short abstract:

This paper investigates the changes that took place and the compromises made by fishing families in their efforts to re-build their lives and begin anew after 3.11, showing how their feelings and views of the process changed over time.

Paper long abstract:

For fisheries householders, working in the maritime industries is more than work, it is a way of life. Fisheries enterprise householders in Miyagi Prefecture long prided themselves their ability to work for themselves, refusing to bow their heads down to others. Theirs was a hard way of life, but one which provided them with personal autonomy and a life to live on their own terms. The disasters of 3.11 took this away in a few short minutes. Reconstruction and recovery funds were made available to enterprise householders by the national government, enabling many to to re-build and renew their lives, but with great compromises, and at great costs: most householders have lost their independence as they were forced to form cooperative work groups in order to receive recovery funds. This paper investigates the changes that took place and the compromises made by fishing cooperatives householders in their efforts to re-build their lives and begin anew. Focusing on one working group in central Miyagi Prefecture, the paper not only follows how activities and division of labor changed from pre- to post-3.11, but also shows how individual's thoughts and feelings changed throughout the process: from declaring one would never do it, to making compromises and fighting for change to become a reality, to becoming a leader in the new way of life.

panel P023
Living with disaster: comparative approaches (JAWS/JASCA joint panel)