Lee

Invisible Enemy, Visible Humanity: Challenging our Metaphors of Pandemic

How are we talking about this current Covid-19 epidemic? By that I mean, not how often or with whom (since that would be a silly question–we talk about it literally every second with everyone we know), but rather in what way and using what language. What rhetorical devices are we, our politicians, and our media …

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States of Emergency: Pandemics, Olympics, and Dreams Deferred

Last night the Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, delivered an address to the nation. In it, he declared a State of Emergency in some prefectures of Japan, including the capital city, Tokyo. This was all as expected, and perhaps even hoped for. Many of my Japanese friends wanted a state of emergency declared a while …

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Covid-19 and the Productivity Paradox: How to grow in a time of quarantine

Social distancing has become the most potent strategy to deal with the Covid-19 epidemic.  In order to “flatten the curve” and buy more time, citizens around the world have sometimes been ordered, sometimes been asked, and sometimes been forced to remain at home. And while some employees continue to work at home, some cannot. Others,either …

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Face Mask

The Masks We Wear: Strength and vulnerability in the age of Covid-19

Surgical masks are everywhere and nowhere. We wear them when we go out, we see them on almost everyone’s faces, we read articles about how stores (and even some hospitals) have run out of them. There is now a burgeoning cottage industry of make-your-own surgical mask tutorials, as well as an on-going and vociferous debate …

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Valentine's Day concept

What is Love? Reclaiming Valentine’s Day in the Age of Anxiety

The Strange Case of the Day of Love Let’s emphasize that. It has lingered. Not “thrived” or even “survived” in the style of Christmas and Halloween which, having lost most of their claims to religious tradition long ago, reinvented themselves as secular (and even internationally fluid) holidays. Like Valentine’s Day, they too reek of over-advertising, …

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