Are we living in a posttruth era? What elements constitute this? How has this impacted upon the initial denial, inaction, and eventual bewildering (and deadly) response to the pandemic – particularly in Western democracies? And how might educators respond?
Corona Connections: Learning for a Renewed World
The coronavirus, now enveloping the world in an unprecedented health crisis, undermines economies, exacerbates all other global problems, and adds suffering to the vulnerable throughout the world. COVID-19 is likely the first of repeated pandemics to be experienced in an already frighteningly uncertain future. As peace educators, we know that we cannot deny or retreat from the fear, but take hope and action to engage in the learning we believe to be the best and most effective response to the full range of threats to our planet. This crisis is an opportunity to formulate questions that lead us into authentically new, fresh forms of learning, unprecedented inquiries, truly distinct, but still derived from those we have for some time employed in our attempts to elicit visions of and plans for a preferred world. It is time, as well, for a truly new vision. Toward the conceptualization of that vision, the GCPE is posting this series, “Corona Connections: Learning for a Renewed World.”
The webinar “Peace Education and the Pandemic: Global Perspectives” featured a dozen acclaimed peace educators from around the world who shared unique perspectives on the systemic violence COVID-19 has revealed and how they are using peace education to respond to these and other critical issues. Video of the event is now available.
“Corona Connections: Learning for a Renewed World” is a special series exploring the COVID-19 pandemic and the ways it relates to other peace education issues. This inquiry explores the interrelationships between the causes, characteristics and potential consequences of the threats posed by nuclear weapons and global pandemics.
Werner Wintersteiner argues that the Corona crisis reveals that globalization has so far brought interdependence without mutual solidarity. The virus is spreading globally, and combating it will require a global effort, but the states are reacting with national tunnel vision. In contrast, a perspective of global citizenship would be appropriate to the global crisis.
Many in peace and justice movements have called for using this critical time to reflect, plan and learn our way to a more positive future. One contribution we, peace educators might make to this process is reflection on the possibilities for alternative language and metaphors toward which peace linguists and feminists have long tried to persuade us to focus our attention.