BISA 2020 prize winners announced - Dr Becky Martin Wins!

Dr Becky Martin has won the prestigious title the L.H.M Ling Outstanding First Book Prize.

This is a fantastic achievement for her book 'Disarming Doomsday: The Human Impact of Nuclear Weapons since Hiroshima '

Since the first atomic bomb exploded over Hiroshima, the history of nuclear warfare has been tangled with the spaces and places of scientific research and weapons testing, armament and disarmament, pacifism and proliferation.

Nuclear geography gives us the tools to understand these events, and the extraordinary human cost of nuclear weapons. Disarming Doomsday explores the secret history of nuclear weapons by studying the places they build and tear apart, from Los Alamos to Hiroshima. It looks at the legacy of nuclear imperialism from weapons testing on Christmas Island and across the South Pacific, as well as the lasting harm this has caused to indigenous communities and the soldiers that conducted the tests. For the first time, these complex geographies are tied together. Disarming Doomsday takes us forward, describing how geographers and geotechnology continue to shape nuclear war, and, perhaps, help to prevent it.

L.H.M. Ling Outstanding First Book Prize - Becky Alexis-Martin

The aim of the L.H.M. Ling prize is to honour Lily's work and to recognise outstanding early career research in the discipline.

The judging panel said: 

"Disarming Doomsday: The Human Impact of Nuclear Weapons Since Hiroshima provides a pioneering account of the human impact of nuclear weapons by pushing the boundaries of postcolonial and feminist perspectives onto exploring both the effects of nuclear weapons technologies and tests on people on the margins and on their experiences. The author uncovers the colonial and racist practices of five nuclear weapons states in conducting nuclear weapons testing in a few remaining or former colonies on the Pacific Islands and hidden areas. By cutting across various borders of health, environment, gender, imperialism, space and geography, the book provides an original, innovative, and comprehensive analysis, successfully expanding our intellectual horizon of nuclear warfare in IR beyond the hegemonic discourses and selected attention paid to nuclear weapons states, non-nuclear regimes, and the experiences of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The author didn’t forget to discuss spaces for the possibility of peace as a challenge to a patriarchal discourse of nuclear warfare. This book is an impressive and fascinating work.”

Dr Becky Martin said:

"I am absolutely thrilled. My research for 'Disarming Doomsday' spanned Colorado to Kiribati, on a journey to understand and share the voices of communities who have been affected by nuclear weapons. My book considers the global legacy of human impacts due to nuclear warfare, and reveals the new threats that now emerge. My research stands on the shoulders of a tremendous legacy of international pacifist, post colonial and feminist scholarship, so it is a great honour to receive this prize. I would like to thank the communities who so generously shared their lives with me, everybody at Pluto Press, my colleagues at Manchester Metropolitan University, and BISA. Thank you!"

"Massive thank you to everyone for your conversations, understanding, kindness, and support. For letting me into your lives, to write about the challenges your community has faced. I will be dedicating my award to you - veterans and descendants - at the virtual award ceremony on 29th June. This book was for you, anyway. This is our prize. Let's hope it's a medal next time..."

Full details of the awards can be found here:

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