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The Politics of InvisibilityPublic Knowledge about Radiation Health Effects after Chernobyl$
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Olga Kuchinskaya

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780262027694

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262027694.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
The Politics of Invisibility

Olga Kuchinskaya

The MIT Press

The introductory chapter explains the problem of post-Chernobyl contamination, which is described as chronic, pervasive, and imperceptible, and outlines how the recognition of Chernobyl’s consequences in Belarus fluctuated historically. The chapter introduces the concept of the production of (in)visibility of Chernobyl’s consequences: different ways of representing Chernobyl can make radiation and its effects observable and publicly visible, or they can make them unobservable and publicly nonexistent. Articulation and its infrastructural conditions are emphasized as the main aspects in the production of (in)visibility. The chapter also discusses the potential scale of the production of invisibility and argues that the production of invisibility is a function of power relations. The chapter concludes with a brief description of the author’s methodological approach and a chapter outline.

Keywords:   Chernobyl, radiological contamination, chronic hazards, imperceptible hazards, production of invisibility, articulation, infrastructural conditions

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