Read Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters by Kate Brown Free Online
Book Title: Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters|
The author of the book: Kate Brown
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 35.97 MB
Edition: Oxford University Press, USA
Date of issue: March 8th 2013
Read full description of the books Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters:While many transnational histories of the nuclear arms race have been written, Kate Brown provides the first definitive account of the great plutonium disasters of the United States and the Soviet Union.
In Plutopia, Brown draws on official records and dozens of interviews to tell the extraordinary stories of Richland, Washington and Ozersk, Russia-the first two cities in the world to produce plutonium. To contain secrets, American and Soviet leaders created plutopias--communities of nuclear families living in highly-subsidized, limited-access atomic cities. Fully employed and medically monitored, the residents of Richland and Ozersk enjoyed all the pleasures of consumer society, while nearby, migrants, prisoners, and soldiers were banned from plutopia--they lived in temporary "staging grounds" and often performed the most dangerous work at the plant. Brown shows that the plants' segregation of permanent and temporary workers and of nuclear and non-nuclear zones created a bubble of immunity, where dumps and accidents were glossed over and plant managers freely embezzled and polluted. In four decades, the Hanford plant near Richland and the Maiak plant near Ozersk each issued at least 200 million curies of radioactive isotopes into the surrounding environment--equaling four Chernobyls--laying waste to hundreds of square miles and contaminating rivers, fields, forests, and food supplies. Because of the decades of secrecy, downwind and downriver neighbors of the plutonium plants had difficulty proving what they suspected, that the rash of illnesses, cancers, and birth defects in their communities were caused by the plants' radioactive emissions. Plutopia was successful because in its zoned-off isolation it appeared to deliver the promises of the American dream and Soviet communism; in reality, it concealed disasters that remain highly unstable and threatening today.
An untold and profoundly important piece of Cold War history, Plutopia invites readers to consider the nuclear footprint left by the arms race and the enormous price of paying for it.
Read information about the authorKate Brown is a Professor of History at University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), and a 2009 Guggenheim Fellow. She is the author of A Biography of No Place, which won the American Historical Association’s International European History Prize for Best Book.
Brown received her B.A. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and her Ph.D. from the University of Washington, Seattle.
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