Disaster Reponse in Bangladesh

March 1983 (VOL. 1, NO. 1)

Download this article

Basic socio-economic trends in Bangladesh surrounded the independence of the country in the early Seventies and have contributed to the changing forms and functions of the Bangladeshi family. This period included not only a Liberation War, but a set of environmental and social upheavals that ran the gamut from floods, typhoons and famine to social and political instability. It is suggested that selected changes in social relations or social institutions, which were exacerbated by these natural and social upheavals, have become permanent aspects of daily life in the country. It is hypothesized that disasters tend to exacerbate existing trends and patterns of instability or inequality rather than initiate completely new forms of response. In one sense, disasters may be said to attack the weakest link in a society and may encourage changes which are already imminent in that society.