After Maria

In 2017 and 2018 I explored how low-income Puerto Rican families recovered from Hurricane Maria. With the illustrator, John Cei Douglas, we turned this research into a graphic novella in English and Spanish.

Teaching and Workshop Resource

The graphic novella speaks to many themes including representations of “developing” country contexts, environmental justice, gender, inequality, resilience, poverty, vulnerabilities, disasters and identities.

Discover the subtle social, cultural, economic and psychological impacts of disasters that go under the radar of the international news media. The story highlights what recovery means for disaster-affected people – is it simply repairing a damaged roof, or does it also include recovering a person’s sense of home?

Done footage of Ingenio, three weeks after Hurricane Maria
Inside a damaged Ingenio house, three weeks after Hurricane Maria

Contact John Cei Douglas

John is a freelance illustrator based in London. Check out his website and instagram.

Related content

Sou, G. (2022)Reframing resilience as resistance: situating disaster recovery within colonialism. The Geographical Journal. 188(1), 14-27.

Sou, G., Cei Douglas., and Diaz-Basteris, F.(2022) An essay on After Maria. Special Issue on Family and Conflict in Graphic Narratives. Studies in Comics.

Sou, G. and Webber, R. (2021) Un/making the ‘sensory home’: tastes, smells and sounds during disasters. Social and Cultural Geography. 1-19.

Sou, G., Shaw., D., and González, F. A. (2020) A new framework for disaster recovery: Longitudinal qualitative evidence from Puerto Rican households. World Development, 144, 105489.

Sou, G., and Webber, R. (2019). Disruption and recovery of intangible resources during environmental crises: Longitudinal research on ‘home’ in post-disaster Puerto Rico Geoforum106: 182-192.

Interview, Representation and Storytelling. Disaster Deconstructed Podcast. Season 2, Episode 9;

Featured, The Guardian UK, Illustrated Cities. We all just stood there in shock. What happens to a city after disaster. A comic’;

Interview, How do graphic novels help understanding of disaster?. Ask the Geographer Podcast. Royal Geographical Society, London, U.K;

Author, Four reasons to graphically illustrate your research. London School of Economics, Impact Blog. London, U.K;

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