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  • Author or Editor: Sunera Thobani x
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Race, States, Inequalities and Global Society
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This pioneering book demonstrates the disproportionate impact of state responses to COVID-19 on racially marginalized communities.

Written by women and queers of colour academics and activists, the book analyses pandemic lockdowns, border controls, vaccine trials, income support and access to healthcare across eight countries, in North America, Asia, Australasia and Europe, to reveal the inequities within, and between countries.

Putting intersectionality and economic justice at the heart of their frameworks, the authors call for collective action to end the pandemic and transform global inequities.

Contributing to debates around the effects of COVID-19, as well as racial capitalism and neoliberal globalization at large, this research is invaluable in informing future policy

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The speed and force with which COVID-19 spread across the globe caught governments and public health authorities utterly unprepared. Despite their initial belief that the pandemic would be ‘an equalizer’, infection and death rates proved disastrously higher along the hierarchies of race, gender, class, age, disability, religion, caste and sexuality, North/South among other relations of power.

This book brings into focus the socio-economic relationalities that link national and global communities, yet are overlooked in current public health debates. The authors study the devastating effects of this neglect on the uneven distribution of viral risk and death across populations. Going beyond the immediate concerns of the moment, they raise troubling questions about the world that will emerge from the pandemic. The book demonstrates that the COVID-19 pandemic is not only deepening, but actually transforming the forms of racial citizenship and gendered inequalities that shape our research sites.

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The speed and force with which COVID-19 spread across the globe caught governments and public health authorities utterly unprepared. Despite their initial belief that the pandemic would be ‘an equalizer’, infection and death rates proved disastrously higher along the hierarchies of race, gender, class, age, disability, religion, caste and sexuality, North/South among other relations of power.

This book brings into focus the socio-economic relationalities that link national and global communities, yet are overlooked in current public health debates. The authors study the devastating effects of this neglect on the uneven distribution of viral risk and death across populations. Going beyond the immediate concerns of the moment, they raise troubling questions about the world that will emerge from the pandemic. The book demonstrates that the COVID-19 pandemic is not only deepening, but actually transforming the forms of racial citizenship and gendered inequalities that shape our research sites.

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This chapter examines Canadian responses to COVID-19 by situating these in the racial-colonial histories that have shaped the settler society. Focusing on key public health measures adopted during the pandemic’s first wave, and drawing on pertinent government reports, media accounts and community-based studies, I discuss how a ‘race-blind’ approach informed these measures. This approach allowed the virus to interact freely with the nation state’s underlying structures of racial inequality to devastating consequence for Indigenous and other racially minoritized communities. I argue that this ‘race-blind’ approach expresses a sacrificial logic that allowed the state to capitalize on racial-colonial divides as it conflated the health of the nation with that of the white middle class family. Pandemic measures have thus reshaped the nation state’s racial politics by constructing racial minorities as sacrifice-able in order to secure the nation’s post-pandemic future.

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Author:

The speed and force with which COVID-19 spread across the globe caught governments and public health authorities utterly unprepared. Despite their initial belief that the pandemic would be ‘an equalizer’, infection and death rates proved disastrously higher along the hierarchies of race, gender, class, age, disability, religion, caste and sexuality, North/South among other relations of power.

This book brings into focus the socio-economic relationalities that link national and global communities, yet are overlooked in current public health debates. The authors study the devastating effects of this neglect on the uneven distribution of viral risk and death across populations. Going beyond the immediate concerns of the moment, they raise troubling questions about the world that will emerge from the pandemic. The book demonstrates that the COVID-19 pandemic is not only deepening, but actually transforming the forms of racial citizenship and gendered inequalities that shape our research sites.

Restricted access

The speed and force with which COVID-19 spread across the globe caught governments and public health authorities utterly unprepared. Despite their initial belief that the pandemic would be ‘an equalizer’, infection and death rates proved disastrously higher along the hierarchies of race, gender, class, age, disability, religion, caste and sexuality, North/South among other relations of power.

This book brings into focus the socio-economic relationalities that link national and global communities, yet are overlooked in current public health debates. The authors study the devastating effects of this neglect on the uneven distribution of viral risk and death across populations. Going beyond the immediate concerns of the moment, they raise troubling questions about the world that will emerge from the pandemic. The book demonstrates that the COVID-19 pandemic is not only deepening, but actually transforming the forms of racial citizenship and gendered inequalities that shape our research sites.

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Situating the COVID-19 pandemic in ongoing processes of racial capitalism and cultural globalization, this introductory chapter discusses the overall impact of the health crises within, and across, the North/South divide. Demonstrating how states have failed most of their populations in our research sites, this chapter argues that the pandemic has become an opportunity for states to restructure relations of exploitation and violence within their respective national and international domains.

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