Eric Klinenberg. Heat Wave: A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, xvii + pp. $ (paper), ISBN. 15 quotes from Heat Wave: A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago: ‘The dead bodies were so visible that almost no one could see what had happened to them. The story of the deadly Chicago heat wave is fascinating enough, but don’t expect Eric Klinenberg’s book to be a popularly-accessible page-turner.

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A quick survey of Chicagoan friends and family found that not a single one knew of the huge death toll, although they certainly remembered the heat wave.

Our social infrastructure could be the key to bridging our seemingly unbridgeable divides—and safeguarding democracy. As Klinenberg demonstrates in this incisive and gripping account of the contemporary urban condition, the widening cracks in the social foundations of American cities that the Chicago heat wave made visible have by no means subsided as the temperatures returned to normal.

I hope nothing like this ever happens again, but with all of the climate changes that are going on, it is bound to! The social explanation for this discrepancy related to the Mexican cultural emphasis on family and looking out for the elderly, which resulted in providing care that was not provided in North Lawndale. If it is not pathbreaking for the study of political communication, it is nonetheless destined to be a recurrent point of reference and an excellent choice for classroom use. Nov 17, Emily rated it really liked it Shelves: Daley questioned the medical examiner’s death totals, wondering publicly if the numbers were “really real”.

A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago. Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web.

Customers who bought this item also wxve. The film is still a work in progress so only about 20 minutes were screened but it’s a fascinating topic. Is this feature helpful? He makes far too much of the mayor’s brief questioning of exactly what constitutes a “heat-related death” — a question, I might add, that most of us had at the time.

The first half of this book, detailing the Chicago Heat Wave that killed people, is actually quite fascinating. Top city officials tried to gloss over the event as much as possible. Recommended if you’re in the mood to do some work to get to the meat of the story; it brought me right back to grad school but in a “late night exhausted reading session” way more than a “stimulating class discussion” way. The book focuses on four phenom Klinenberg’s “Heat Wave” is an engaging, interesting example of public sociology.


Would you like to tell us about a lower price? When asked about weather related events that incur the deaths of hundreds of people, most think of hurricanes, floods, or large tornado outbreaks. Klinenberg’s assertion is two-fold.

In Heat Wave, the author presents a compelling and complex portrait of a natural and social disaster. Early in the morning of January 18,a train derailment sent a cloud of poisonous gas drifting toward the small town.

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His focus is on how a large metropolitan area can be brought to it’s knees by a sustained heat wave. God is in the details, though, and Klinenberg painstakingly lays out for us both the structural and more proximate policies that led to the disastrous Chicago mortality figures of July It’s also largely a story of the “have’s” and the “have nots”. Sep 16, molly rated it really liked it Recommends it for: For sociology of disasters class. The first group of red and yellow vehicles, each about forty-eight feet long, arrived on Friday, but they filled up quickly and dozens of bodies remained.

Yet one kind of weather-related catastrophe — a deadly wave of heat and humidity — seems not to get nearly the notice given the others, despite the fact that it kills more than all the other kinds combined.

Even worse, both the fire and police commissioner claimed that their departments were not overwhelmed, despite substantial evidence to the contrary. The report has been widely requested by and circulated to public health planners throughout the nation.

American Journal of Sociology. Withoutabox Submit to Film Festivals. Klinenberg shows in detail how the tragedy was compounded by many factors and interests, including a public health and medical establishment that did not anticipate the magnitude of the looming danger and local news media that treated the severe heat and humidity as little more than a novel topic for lighthearted feature stories.

The police and fire departments were over-worked and there was no ability to coordinate services or even recognize the situation existed.

llinenberg But how, exactly, can this be done? Until now, no one could explain either the overwhelming number or the heartbreaking manner of the deaths resulting from the Chicago heat wave.


As a deputy commissioner of the Health Department inI was there for every step of the action, in front of the cameras and microphones and around the table at meetings about emergency response. You can see where certain aspects are found in cities across America, and not just specific to Chicago. Preview — Heat Wave by Eric Klinenberg. A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago.

A lack of energy assistance, the result of federal budget cuts, meant that fixed-income residents were unable to afford air-conditioning on a regular basis. Just as a medical autopsy is performed in order to determine the physiological cause of death, Klinenberg argues that a social autopsy of the heat wave similarly views the city of Chicago as a system of municipal organs in order to identify the klinebberg conditions responsible for these collective deaths Amazon Inspire Digital Educational Resources.

Heat Wave: A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago, Klinenberg

These include the makeup of neighborhoods that were affected, comparing hsat neighborhood with vastly different rates of deaths, to erlc and understand klnienberg factors contributing to the differing toll. Meteorologists had been warning residents about a two-day heat wave, but these temperatures did not end that soon. In that case, I’m faulting him for not writing like a historian – not fair of me, but he still only gets two stars as a result.

Other descriptions of the mayoral response are similarly off-base. Thousands of Chicago’s elderly lived alone many of them in or near povertyisolated in many ways and by many factors. These individuals died alone, unprotected and uncared for. Eric Klineberg’s “social autopsy” of the Chicago heat wave looks at the social isolation of seniors who lived in high-crime neighborhoods and were afraid to leave their houses or open t I was recently stunned by the fact that Cook County had the highest number wavs weather-related deaths of any county in the U.

That’s how you know it’s bad. Another reviewer claims that the author is literally the only person on earth who cares about this subject.