My work on ‘Pandemic, Race and` Moral Panic’ has been published in a new book, ‘The Pandemic Reader: Exposing Social (In)justice in the Time of COVID-19.’ Edited by Assistant Professor Mako Fitts Ward, Professor Jennifer A. Sandlin, Michelle McGibbney Vlahoulis, and Dr Christine L. Holman, the book explores the social and political impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The Pandemic Reader offers critical perspectives on the sweeping injustices intensified by COVID-19 and the resurgence of racialised state violence. It offers context, data, viewpoints and solutions to collectively teach, learn, and thrive. It takes up abolitionist teaching methodologies—focusing not only on the many ways the pandemic has exacerbated injustice, but also on how individuals and communities are healing, expressing vulnerability, and building community—to amplify intersectional racial justice strategies across learning spaces. This collection is a pedagogical intervention to locate how individuals and communities propel us forward through the multiple pandemics of 2020.”
I’ve been interviewed by NPR’s Code Switch on the growing political backlash about critical race theory. I discuss my research on moral panics about race. A moral panic is a situation or group positioned as a threat to social values. On the surface, it may seem nonsensical to ban critical race theory from schools, as it’s only taught at specialist university courses. Dig deeper: moral panics have always mobilised against a specific issue, and then moves to scale back other civic rights from minorities or marginalised groups.
I spoke with Angeline Chew Longshore from The Mauimama about my article, “Using sociology to think critically about Coronavirus COVID-19 studies.” We talked about how I was motivated to write about the sociology of science because I saw so many people struggling to make sense of the pandemic. We discussed how national cultures are impacting responses to the virus, why precarious employment in healthcare is causing high rates of infection, and how we can better check whether the information we hear is credible.
The past of the month has proved especially busy. I’ve done a few media interviews and launched a new webseries with Associate Professor Alana Letin, called Race in Society. More on these projects in the coming days. Today, I look back on my interview with 3CR Diaspora Blues about my article, Pandemic, race and moral panic. Listen below, with a transcription for accessibility further down.
Since I last wrote you, the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has obviously transformed the world. I went into voluntary lockdown in early March, and Australia went into official lockdown at the end of March. I’ve been writing a lot on the pandemic on my social media, especially on Twitter and on Facebook and Instagram stories, as well as on my research blog.