It is not easy to smile from behind a mask. But the present is an unprecedentedly confusing moment and situations requiring a smile rarely arrive making it a skill not necessary to be acquired in a hurry. But then again, it is safer to grimace from behind a mask because these are also disturbingly intolerant times.
Disclaimer: I acknowledge the privilege that I have to sit down and contemplate how Covid-19 is affecting me.
Strikes and lockdowns are not uncommon in the Darjeeling Hills, where I am from. When the first 21-day lockdown was announced by the Prime Minister of India, folks back home turned to humour (as they always do; humour seems to be a way of life to cope with the antagonising situations we have been facing for a long time).
We joked, “We have survived the 104-days lockdown; the 21-days is nothing”.
We have been under lockdown for a few weeks now; it has been a few very difficult weeks, very surreal, almost unbelievable. Who would have thought that the whole world could come to a standstill – well almost!
What are the metaphors for illness and the numerous vocabularies that confront it – physical, political, medical, economic, cultural and ecological? COVID-19 has brought the world to a ‘pause’, halting the juggernaut of globalisation, disrupting production and supply chains, and making countries go into lockdown.
Some economic implications of moving to a new normal
How will the COVID-19 international public health crisis affect our economic lives? A lot depends on how we think not just of the dynamics of the economy as it is formally understood but on how our lives revolve around our economic roles. In particular, what has changed economically through the crisis that would not have happened and cannot be undone? What do those changes mean?
This is a global pandemic: Why do employees still come to work sick?
Aleksandra Luksyte and Gillian Yeo
Despite the serious public health crisis we find ourselves in, people still tend to show up for work sick. Aleksandra Luksyte and Gillian Yeo examine what motivates employees to do so, how this behaviour has changed over the course of the pandemic, and what organisations and employers can learn from this in order to promote a healthy and safe work environment in the long run.
Joanne Sneddon, Julie Lee and Paul Gerrans look into how the COVID-19 crisis has affected how and how much we donate to charitable causes and highlights what fundraisers and charities can learn from the observed changes in giving.
COVID-19: Civil liberties and the role of the state
Temporary visa holders left behind in Australia
Mary Anne Kenny
Mary Anne Kenny highlights the precarious situation of temporary visa holders in the coronavirus pandemic, proving that their status not only comes with fewer rights but also a decreased sense of responsibility by the government for their fates as compared to Australian citizens and residents.