MyDD on Hurricane Katrina

Part 1 of 3: Since the Storm: No End to Katrina in New Orleans, which is a truthful take on post-Katrina NOLA, proving that she’s ever-present.

In the midst of [planning to do some] wedding planning, I was overcome with the impact Katrina had on even that. It would all be so much easier if I could just go home to my parents’ house and the church parish where I received every other sacrament, but now it is no longer an active community and we don’t really belong or have a history anywhere else. Friends and family are scattered so I need to take into consideration people flying in and hotel rooms, etc.

And that’s when that urge to postpone the wedding kicks in! 🙂

So I switch my attention to my dissertation and conference presentations since I’m committed [no pun intended] to my PhD program. Here’s my latest abstract submitted to 4Cs 2008:

A growing number of native and naturalized New Orleanians have turned to online spaces in order to rebuild the communities washed away by Hurricane Katrina and the levee breaches. Pulling from interview data collected from 2006-2008, this paper will share testimony from those place-bloggers, whose individually authored blogs and collaboration on neighborhood-designated wikis sponsored by demonstrate civic activism in the face of mainstream media.

Nearly two years after the storm hit, many traditional media are focusing on other stories, while the post-Katrina reconstruction is still unfinished. Locals are increasingly anxious about the rebuilding of the levees and are plagued with high crime rates and still unfulfilled insurance claims. Documenting these frustrations daily on their blogs and using their blog networks to meet in person and discuss political, economic, and social issues, these New Orleanians, who are attending to the realties of their lives, offer models of public writing that shows outsiders world-wide what life is like in “the city that care forgot” and demonstrates the civic importance of new media.

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