The Resilience Doctrine: Disaster Collectivism in the Climate and Pandemic Crises


The Resilience Doctrine: A Primer on Disaster Collectivism in the Climate and Pandemic Crises (Zoltán Grossman, Counterpunch, February 2021)

Part 1: An Introduction to Disaster Resilience
Part 2: How Disasters Can Encourage Social Change
Part 3: Indigenous Nations Understand Disaster Resilience
Part 4: Mutual Aid in the Pandemic and Beyond

DOWNLOAD PDF of The Resilience Doctrine (combined parts) 

Links to a 4-part Primer article series, and links that appear in the presentations below, are available at


The Resilience Doctrine: Disaster Cooperativism in the Climate & Pandemic Crises (Zoltán Grossman, April 2020) 

The Evergreen State College held a “Pandemic Academy” lecture series in spring quarter 2020. On April 7, Dr. Zoltán Grossman, Member of the Faculty in Geography and Native Studies) presented “The Resilience Doctrine: Disaster Cooperativism in the Climate and Pandemic Crises,” as two narrated powerpoint presentations. Part I (26.5 min.) examines the question of “Individualism vs. Community,” and Part II (31.5 min.) looks at “State Authority vs. Mutual Aid.”

“Climate change and pandemics are sad and frightening topics, but they can also be viewed as an unprecedented opportunity for 21st-century societies. These crises can become an excuse to quickly make necessary changes for a healthier future for people and the planet that otherwise may take many years to implement. Times of disaster, whether or not they are triggered by climate or health catastrophes, are opportunities to focus on the need for social and environmental change, and our response to disasters may contain the kernels of a better world.”

Dr. Grossman holds a Ph.D. in Geography from the University of Wisconsin. His expertise is in political/cultural geography and Indigenous Studies, and he twice co-taught “Catastrophe: Community Resilience in the Face of Disaster,” and was a co-founder of Evergreen’s Climate Change and Pacific Rim Indigenous Nations Project. He was author of Unlikely Alliances: Native Nations and White Communities Join to Defend Rural Lands (University of Washington Press, 2017), and co-editor of Asserting Native Resilience: Pacific Rim Indigenous Nations Face the Climate Crisis (Oregon State University Press, 2012). His faculty website is at


Part I links: Individualism and Community

Pandemic Academy (The Evergreen State College, Spring 2020)

Current COVID-19 Data

Catastrophe: Community Resilience in the Face of Disaster (The Evergreen State College class, Winter 2020)

Zoltán Grossman (Faculty in Geography & Native Studies, The Evergreen State College)

Climate Change and Pacific Rim Indigenous Nations Project (The Evergreen State College)

The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism (Naomi Klein, Random House, 2007)

‘We Know This Script’: Naomi Klein Warns of ‘Coronavirus Capitalism’ in New Video Detailing Battle Before Us (Jessica Corbett, Common Dreams, 3/17/20)

How to Beat Coronavirus Capitalism (online teach-in with Naomi Klein, Astra Taylor, & Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor)

A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster (Rebecca Solnit, Penguin, 2009)

‘The impossible has already happened’: what coronavirus can teach us about hope (Rebecca Solnit, The Guardian, 4/7/20)  

New virus cases continue to slow, cluster infections still a concern (Yonhap News Agency, South Korea, 3/16/20) 

Living Like Kings (video on homeless after Christchurch Earthquake in NZ, Zoe McIntosh, Vimeo, 2014).

Common Ground relief (Louisiana, 2005)

Occupy Sandy (New York, 2012)

The Battle For Paradise: Puerto Rico Takes on the Disaster Capitalists (Naomi Klein, Haymarket Books, 2019)

Preppers Are Getting Ready for the Barackalypse (Tim Murphy, Mother Jones, 1/13).

Doomsday preppers are thinning out across the US, and it may be because President Trump quiets their fears (Hilary Brueck, Business Insider, 8/26/19)

Doomsday Prep for the Super Rich (Evan Osnos, The New Yorker, 1/23/17).

Thanks to Coronavirus, ‘Prepper’ Business is Booming (NPR, 2/4/20)

Coronavirus and the Militia-Sphere (Devin Burghart, Institute for Research & Education on Human Rights, 3/26/20)

Coronavirus Pandemic: White Nationalist Plague (Chuck Tanner, Institute for Research & Education on Human Rights, 3/27/20)

I study collapsed civilizations. Here’s my advice for a climate change apocalypse (Chris Begley, Lexington Herald-Leader, 9/23/19)

Parable of the Sower (Octavia Butler, Grand Central Publishing, 1993)

Video shows cell phones on Florida beach during spring break, and where they’ve travelled during coronavirus outbreak (Colin Wolf , Orlando Weekly, 3/27/20)

More than 40 spring breakers who ignored public health advice test positive for coronavirus (Christina Zdanowicz, CNN, 4/1/20)

Where America Didn’t Stay Home Even as the Virus Spread  (James Glanz, Benedict Carey, Josh Holder, Derek Watkins, Jennifer Valentino-DeVries, Rick Rojas & Lauren Leather, New York Times, 4/2/20)


Part II links: State Authority and Mutual Aid

Washing Our Hands of Trump and Powerlessness (Zoltán Grossman, Common Dreams, 3/12/20)

Millions of Undocumented Workers Left Out of Coronavirus Stimulus Plan; Dozens of Immigrants on Hunger Strike at Northwest Detention Center (Democracy Now, 3/30/20)

The farmworkers putting food on America’s tables are facing their own coronavirus crisis (Catherine E. Shoichet, CNN, 4/11/20).

Thinking in an Emergency (Elaine Scarry, W.W. Norton, 2011)

How Seattle Flu Study defied federal government to test for coronavirus (Nick Bowman, MyNorthwest, 3/12/20)

Coronavirus sleuths say they still see a ‘path forward’ after regulatory snag (Alan Boyle, GeekWire, 3/11/20)

‘It’s Just Everywhere Already’: How Delays in Testing Set Back the U.S. Coronavirus Response (Sheri Fink & Mike Baker, New York Times, 3/10/20)

Exclusive: Captain of aircraft carrier with growing coronavirus outbreak pleads for help from Navy (Matthias Gafni & Joe Garofoli, San Francisco Chronicle, 3/31/20)

The Navy Fired the Captain of the Theodore Roosevelt. See How the Crew Responded (Helene Cooper, Thomas Gibbons-Neff & Eric Schmitt, New York Times, 4/3/20)

Guam locals worried about coronavirus-hit Navy ship’s quarantine (Chris Gelardi, Al Jazeera, 4/10/20)

Asserting Native Resilience: Pacific Rim Indigenous Nations Face the Climate Crisis (Oregon State University Press, 2012);  Foreword by Billy Frank Jr.         

Unlikely Alliances: Native Nations and White Communities Join to Defend Rural Lands (University of Washington Press, 2017); Foreword by Winona LaDuke

Coronavirus sparks an epidemic of people helping people in Seattle (Naomi Ishikasa, Seattle Times, 3/13/20).

As a coronavirus pandemic sweeps the world, American Indian communities turn to one another, teachings (Lynda Mapes, Seattle Times, 3/24/20)

Native American tribe takes trailblazing steps to fight Covid-19 outbreak (Nina Lakhani, The Guardian, 3/18/20)

Maori Disaster Resilience in Aotearoa New Zealand (Zoltán Grossman presentation)

Māori marae communities are closing their gates for protection from coronavirus (D’Angelo Martin, Te Ao Māori News, 3/18/20)

Washington state tribes, allies mobilize to gather medical protection needed in coronavirus fight (Lynda Mapes, Seattle Times, 4/3/20).

Howling during the pandemic in West Olympia (Zoltán Grossman video)

Coronavirus doctors and nurses in Iran are lifting the morale of COVID-19 patients through dance (EuroNews)

Italians singing in Salerno (Leonardo Carella video)

Revealed: food bank shortages expected to hit Washington state by mid-April (Jason Wilson, The Guardian, 4/4/20).

Thurston County Food Bank

Olympia Mutual Aid Collective

Thurston Community Aid for COVID-19

Evergreen Community COVID-19 Support Group

Tacoma Mutual Aid Collective

Mutual aid resources and groups around the continent

StrikeDebt (nationwide movement of debt resisters fighting for economic justice and democratic freedom)

CoWorker (nonunion worker organizing)

During the Covid-19 pandemic, nowhere is safe for homeless people (Catherine Kim, Vox, 3/18/20)

Seattle mayor to expand shelter space available for homeless as a result of coronavirus outbreak (Sydney Brownstone, Seattle Times, 3/5/20)

How to build mutual aid that will last after the Coronavirus pandemic (Nathan Schneider, America: The Jesuit Review, 4/1/20)

Evergreen as the ‘Resilience College’ (Zoltán Grossman, 11/19)

History Will Remember When the World Stopped (Donna Ashworth, Ladies Pass It On, 3/18/20)