Learning from lockdown
What the corona crisis teaches us about the human side of medicine; how France’s response has revealed the impact of decades of neoliberalism; and why the pandemic may shake up the country’s education system.
Eurozine review 9/2020
Letras Libres 5/2020
Czas Kultury 1/2020
O’r Pedwar Gwynt 1/2020
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Healthcare and democracy
France’s pandemic response has led to further centralization and revealed the impact upon healthcare of decades of neoliberalism, write Fabienne Brugère and Guillaume le Blanc. With policies dictated by expert committees, vertical structures of power are thriving while democratic and community healthcare policies are rolled back.
COVID-19 has reshaped the political subject, now stripped of autonomy and reduced to survival mode. Protecting this ‘non-sovereign life’ means resisting the further de-democratization of healthcare and preventing it from being ‘stripped of all existential meaning’ by the ‘technical arsenal of the hospital’.
François Dubet salutes teachers whose dedication and creativity in devising ways to ‘work otherwise’ is making a real difference. When life finally returns to ‘normal’, the pandemic may serve to shake up the ‘homogeneity of the education system’ and see greater trust placed in ‘the inventiveness and enthusiasm of teachers’.
Yet the crisis has also revealed the limitations of virtual schooling, reminding us that teaching is more than the transmission of knowledge, and that home learning is no substitute for school as a collective experience. Families’ economic dependency upon regular schooling has been thrown into sharp relief, along with the many forms of inequality between students.
Also: Ramin Jahanbegloo on how Hobbes sheds light on the political situation in Iran; Jean-Luc Nancy on a new scholarly edition of the Koran; Gilles Bataillon pays homage to the late Venezuelan poet Ernesto Cardenal; and an interview with current president of the Palais de Tokyo, Emma Lavigne.
Published 22 May 2020
Original in English
The suspicion that Trump will refuse to accept the result of the election is symptomatic of the state of democratic politics today. That modern liberal democracies can cancel themselves is an inevitable possibility. But to reduce politics to a battle between the defenders and the opponents of ‘true democracy’ is to turn pluralism into its opposite.
Germany’s recent property boom and the inequality it produces; how the new-right uses postmodern theory to propagate nihilistic anti-humanism; and why treason can be a radically democratic act.