The fear of an impending disaster has caused millions of people across the country to become preparers, actively building new architectures and stocking up on goods in order to be prepared. This research focuses on the materiality and temporality of space as much as on practices, since it involves working with preparers who not only accumulate goods, but also actively build new architectures for disasters. Instead of being paralyzed by fear, preparers act, even if those actions don't always seem totally understandable to others. This unique case study has been selected from a three-year ethnographic research project on the culture, politics and practices of the so-called “doomsday preparers”, in which nearly a hundred project participants were brought together over the course of research in six countries.
Any preparer worth his weight in freeze-dried meat stroganoff has been stocking up for years, patiently waiting for a moment like this, a moment that validates research, funds and family ridicule. Yoshida, Shaila and Redmer, Jamie, “Summary of Market Research Findings on Preppers, Internal Emergent BioSolutions Report, (June 2011). An interviewed preparer suggested that the bunker he was building was the best possible escape plan within the geo boundaries. The bunkers that the preparers build are an ark to go through a probable (but often unspecified) catastrophe; they are a chrysalis from which to be reborn, potentially even in an improved environment.
What is more difficult to explain is the desire shown by some preparers to 'just press the reset button now', as one interviewee said. Under the YouTube alias “The Angry Prepper”, he has been dispensing weekly advice on the coronavirus to his 5000 followers. Julie says she loves her city life with its restaurants and theaters, which makes her a far cry from lonely survivors — perhaps living on the fringes of society and suspected of any government interference in their lives — who populate the public imagination when it comes to preparers. Silicon Valley businesswoman Julie Fredrickson clearly remembers the time she decided to become a preparer — someone preparing for the worst case scenario.But how much does it cost to be prepared? The cost of being a prepper can vary greatly depending on what type of disaster you are preparing for and how much you are willing to spend.
For example, if you are preparing for a natural disaster such as an earthquake or hurricane, you may need to invest in items such as emergency food supplies, water storage containers, first aid kits, and other emergency supplies. On the other hand, if you are preparing for a more extreme event such as a nuclear attack or pandemic outbreak, you may need to invest in items such as gas masks, radiation detectors, and other specialized equipment. The cost of these items can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on what type of disaster you are preparing for.In addition to purchasing supplies and equipment for your prepping needs, there are also other costs associated with being a prepper. For example, many preppers choose to join prepping groups or organizations in order to gain access to resources and information that can help them better prepare for disasters.
These groups often charge membership fees or require members to purchase special equipment or supplies in order to participate. Additionally, many preppers choose to attend seminars or classes related to prepping in order to gain additional knowledge and skills related to disaster preparedness.Overall, the cost of being a prepper can vary greatly depending on what type of disaster you are preparing for and how much you are willing to spend. However, it is important to remember that being prepared is essential for surviving any type of disaster and that investing in supplies and equipment now can save your life later.