Discursive Dosing of Radiation Cover Image

Дискурсивное Дозирование Радиации
Discursive Dosing of Radiation

Author(s): Galina Orlova
Subject(s): Evaluation research, Health and medicine and law, Post-War period (1950 - 1989)
Published by: Центр независимых социологических исследований (ЦНСИ)
Keywords: Discursive Dosing; Radiation; Discursive Figures; Discursive Formations; Archeology of the Peaceful Atom; Situated Speech; Scale; Ecology of Discourse; Nuclear Veterans;

Summary/Abstract: This article is devoted to the discursive construction of radiation. Here nuclear archeology coexists with nuclear ethnography, and empirical research on nuclear industry veterans’ speech is supplemented by epistemological work to expand the discursive analytics. I consider scientists and engineers, the pioneers of Soviet atomic technoscience, as carriers of pre-Chernobyl discourses about the “peaceful atom.” The article focuses on how these people, for whom radiation had not been a subject of public speech for decades, today include it in retrospective narratives about their life and work addressed to researchers, journalists, residents of the atomic city, and readers of nuclear memoirs. In search of procedures for inclusion and conditions of possibility for articulation of radiation, I turn to the analysis of discursive figures, formations, and individual speech situations—that is, I combine in a single study different scales of discursive analytics. In the article, three discursive formations of the “peaceful atom”—grouped around nuclear optimism, radiation damage, and safety—are briefly characterized in an archaeological mode. I suggest that the conditions of possibility for absence of radiation in the nuclear industry veterans’ speech are determined by radiation’s position in relation to larger atomic discourses. At the same time, the inclusion of radiation in discourse always occurs in a local situation of interaction with its own pragmatic resources for meaning production.

  • Issue Year: 11/2019
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 82-119
  • Page Count: 38
  • Language: Russian