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**1. History of Survivalism:**
– Originated in the UK and the US due to government policies, nuclear threats, religious beliefs, and apocalyptic fiction.
– Civil defense programs during the Cold War promoted public shelters and storage of food supplies.
– The Great Depression of 1929 highlighted the importance of being prepared.
– Concerns about inflation, monetary devaluation, and nuclear threats in the 1960s led to increased individual preparations.
– Publications and seminars in the 1960s and 1970s emphasized survival skills and retreat building.

**2. Terminology and Key Figures:**
– Term ‘survivalist’ emerged in the early 1980s to describe individuals preparing for emergencies.
– Concepts like ‘retreater’ and advice from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on storing food supplies.
– Authors like Bruce D. Clayton, Joel Skousen, Harry Browne, and Don Stephens provided guidance on survival skills, retreat building, and food storage.
– Popularization of the movement through publications like ‘The Survivor’ and ‘Inflation Survival Letter.’
– Firearms instructor Jeff Cooper provided insights on fortifying retreats against small arms fire.

**3. Preparation Methods:**
– Focuses on self-reliance, stockpiling supplies, and acquiring survival skills.
– Ranges from survival kits to elaborate bunkers.
– Training in first aid, self-defense, and self-sufficiency is common.
– Building structures like survival retreats and underground shelters for catastrophic scenarios.
– Emphasizes gaining knowledge to survive societal collapses.

**4. Impact and Evolution of Survivalism:**
– Influence on individuals to be prepared for emergencies.
– Development of survival retreats and underground shelters.
Education through publications and seminars on survival skills and self-reliance.
– Increased awareness of emergency preparedness through stockpiling supplies.
– Evolution from personal emergency preparedness to a dedicated lifestyle for some individuals.

**5. P.S. Letter and Survival Tomorrow:**
– Mel Tappan, Jeff Cooper, Al J Venter, Bruce D. Clayton, and Nancy Mack Tappan were key figures in survivalism.
– Content of P.S. Letter focused on survival retreats, logistical guidance, and construction.
– Evolution of the newsletter under Karl Hess, reflecting changing survivalist landscape in the 1980s.
– Legacy includes influence on the survivalist community, relevance in the 1980s, and impact on survivalist ideology and practices.
– Contribution to survivalist literature and evolution of survivalist publications.

Survivalism (Wikipedia)

Survivalism is a social movement of individuals or groups (called survivalists, doomsday preppers or preppers) who proactively prepare for emergencies, such as natural disasters, and other disasters causing disruption to social order (that is, civil disorder) caused by political or economic crises. Preparations may anticipate short-term scenarios or long-term, on scales ranging from personal adversity, to local disruption of services, to international or global catastrophe. There is no bright line dividing general emergency preparedness from prepping in the form of survivalism (these concepts are a spectrum), but a qualitative distinction is often recognized whereby preppers/survivalists prepare especially extensively because they have higher estimations of the risk of catastrophes happening. Nonetheless, prepping can be as limited as preparing for a personal emergency (such as a job loss, storm damage to one's home, or getting lost in wooded terrain), or it can be as extensive as a personal identity or collective identity with a devoted lifestyle.

Survivalism emphasises self-reliance, stockpiling supplies, and gaining survival knowledge and skills. The stockpiling of supplies is itself a wide spectrum, from survival kits (ready bags, bug-out bags) to entire bunkers in extreme cases.

Survivalists often acquire first aid and emergency medical/paramedic/field medicine training, self-defense training (martial arts, ad hoc weaponry, firearm safety), and improvisation/self-sufficiency training, and they often build structures (survival retreats, underground shelters, etc.) or modify/fortify existing structures etc. that may help them survive a catastrophic failure of society.

Use of the term survivalist dates from the early 1980s.

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