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The civic challenges which come after the pandemic

In the last year we have been forced to disengage from the larger society, with so much of our emotional energy turning towards sustaining close relationships at a distance through the affordances of social platforms. Even when we’re ‘opening up’ the folk epidemiological self-consciousness of the last year can’t be wished away, with wider interactions (accurately) coded as vectors of transmission.

The reservoirs and amplifiers of SARS-CoV-2

There’s not an ‘off’ switch to a pandemic but rather a tendency for it to fade as a daily concern for ever larger swathes of the population, in a process of normalisation liable to be interrupted by resurgences which can easily be cast as coming from undesirable elements who are outside the mainstream of society.