Relocation affecting individual and collective identity


Many citizens find they are forced to relocate themselves and their families away from their home following a disaster. Whole communities may have to relocate elsewhere. This can result in an identity crisis for those affected, whereby their own culture, community relationships and sense of attachment with place are no longer available or accessible to them. Emotionally and psychologically, this can be likened to a period of grieving. Even for those survivors who choose to remain in the locality where the disaster hit, their sense of place and local identity will never be the same. Some or all of the spaces and groups that were familiar to them, that provided comfort, support and personal history, may no longer exist, with the result that “home” becomes just a house, for example. As Ramsay et al. (for literature reference see original source document) state; “the confusion that follows disaster can threaten identity and rapidly undo people's sense of who they are and where they belong”.

Note: See source document for full reference.

Applicable to: