Object structure


Przesiedleńcy ze strefy wykluczenia po katastrofie atomowej w Czarnobylu: problemy z zadomawianiem się w nowej przestrzeni


Evacuees from the Exclusion Zone after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster: problems with settling in a new space ; Journal of Urban Ethnology 17 (2019)


Kozłowska-Doda, Jadwiga


Instytut Archeologii i Etnologii PAN

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24 cm

Subject and Keywords:

the sense of settlement ; rootedness ; Chernobyl nuclear disaster ; Belarus ; oral history


After the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, the so-called Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, covering the area within the 30 km radius from the nuclear reactor site, was established (also in Belarus). All people were evacuated from the zone and displaced to “clean” territory. For the purpose of the current paper, reports of witnesses from the documental prose, dialectal texts, publications and Belarus Archives of Oral History were analysed in an attempt to find in their narratives the answers to the following questions: who the people called “chernobyltsy” (literally: the Chernobyl ones) are and in what way they were and are seen by other people, especially just after the disaster; what the reaction of the people to the process of evacuation was; what the indigenous people during the evacuation took with them; what they left at their homes and why; what their attitude towards new comfortable houses and flats was; in what way they tried to adapt themselves to new environment; where they buried the dead; and whether they successfully settled in their new places of residence. Having analysed the reports and arranged them according to the phenomenology of the area based on the report of H. Buczyńska-Garewicz, the category of “rootedness” of S. Weil and J. Tischner, A. van Gennep’s theory of rites of passage”, the author concludes that a great number of “chernobyltsy” are deeply rooted in their motherland; an approach that excludes the possibility of expanding the definition of “home” and “the sense of settlement”. Those people usually suffer at their new places of residence and sometimes return home. The only strategies favouring their acceptance of a new place that have been observed are focusing on work, especially on working the land (an allotment), or focusing on the health of their children


Journal of Urban Ethnology



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IAiE PAN, call no. P 714 ; IAiE PAN, call no. P 1505 ; click here to follow the link




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Copyright-protected material. May be used within the limits of statutory user freedoms

Digitizing institution:

Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology of the Polish Academy of Sciences

Original in:

Library of the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology of the Polish Academy of Sciences