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Death in LifeSurvivors of Hiroshima$
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Robert Jay Lifton

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780807843444

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9780807882894_lifton

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“A-Bomb Disease”

“A-Bomb Disease”

(p.103) Four “A-Bomb Disease”
Death in Life

Robert Jay Lifton

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter presents the relationship observed between physical fears and early radiation effects, and how they could turn into lifetime bodily concerns. During the years that followed, these fears and concerns became greatly magnified by a development which has come to epitomize the hibakusha's third encounter with death: his growing awareness that medical studies were demonstrating an abnormally high rate of leukemia among survivors of the atomic bomb. There has thus arisen the scientifically inaccurate but emotionally charged term “Abomb disease,” which has taken for its medical model this always fatal malignancy of the blood-forming organs. In 1948, an increased incidence of leukemia was first noted, and it reached a peak between 1950 and 1952.

Keywords:   physical fears, early radiation, lifetime bodily concerns, hibakusha, medical studies, atomic bomb

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