Being or Becoming a Victim? The Example of People Overexposed to Radiation

By Florian Pedrot

The transition to collective action by people who are « victims » of accidental events seems, superficially, to be enigmatic. With regard to the collective mobilisation of irradiated people, the progression of the patients towards being recognised as being in the medical accident category has generally been a slow process. In contrast, recognising that those recently involved in accidents are « victims » has been considerably faster. The background of scandals affecting the health sector in recent years does not seem irrelevant to this. They seem to influence the behaviour of those who use the health system, as well as the lawyers who help them when conflict arises.

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