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Why did so many women die in the 2004 Aceh Tsunami? Child survivor accounts of the disaster
journal contributionposted on 21.06.2022, 23:31 authored by Maila RahiemMaila Rahiem, Husni Rahim, Robin Ersing
This research explores why so many women failed to survive the tsunami in Aceh in 2004. The main question of this study is, why did so many women die in the tsunami? The researchers used qualitative analysis and narrative study as methods of inquiry, with data collected using in-depth semi-structured interviews with 27 child survivors of the Aceh tsunami. The researchers looked at the insights and observations of the child survivors who were often the last people to see their mothers alive and unfortunately witnessed their mothers at first hand as they were unable to survive the tsunami. The findings show, based on the accounts, that many women did not survive the natural disaster because they waited for their husbands to return —in an effort to obey and honor their husbands; that they put the safety of their other family members first, before their own; that they were likely to pray rather than leave, and that they were often more vulnerable and less aware of how to protect themselves. Suggestions for addressing these challenges are also provided in the conclusion.