On 5 August 2020, the Lebanese capital and port city, Beirut, was rocked by a massive explosion that has killed hundreds and injured thousands more, ravaging the heart of the city’s nearby downtown business district and neighbouring housing areas, where more than 750,000 people live.
Port cities are a particular type of territory and are often long-standing examples of resilience, bringing opportunities, wealth, and innovation to their nations and their citizens. They have developed at the crossroads of international trade and commerce and the intersection of sea and land.
Co-labouring in research projects generates new perspectives and creates shared experiences and moments of enjoyment. Reporting on a recent workshop in Ghana, Robert Pijpers and Sabine Luning show how co-labouring both bridges and reveals inequalities inherent in research practices.
The coronavirus outbreak raises fundamental questions about the politics and narratives of crisis, as well as about our “ordinary” everyday lives and sociality. Irene Moretti and Annemarie Samuels introduce a collection of blogposts of Leiden Anthropologists reflecting on the pandemic.
What is the “normal life” politicians refer to when they mark the current crisis as a state of abnormality? Andrew Littlejohn raises the important question of whether we should want to return to our previous “normalcy”, or whether perhaps this normative order itself is deeply destructive.
In this blogpost, Irene Moretti and Erik Bähre have a conversation about the approaches adopted by the Netherlands and Italy to curb the spread of the virus. In doing so, they focus on cultural differences, nationalism and ideas of care.
The rapid spread of covid-19 creates fear and uncertainty, triggering an acute need for theories built on trusted knowledge. Erik de Maaker reflects on how lay and expert theories influence each other in the Netherlands.