1st Edition

How to Live Through a Pandemic

Edited By Simone Abram, Helen Lambert, Jude Robinson Copyright 2024
    226 Pages 16 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book explores what anthropology can contribute to an understanding of how people live through pandemics. It reflects on how pandemics are experienced and what we can learn from Covid-19 as well as previous instances that might inform future responses and help to alleviate suffering. The chapters highlight current research and longer-term reflections from different countries and areas of the discipline, covering medical anthropology, care and surveillance, digital and experimental ethnography, and the everyday economies of lockdown. They show the breadth and originality of anthropological work relevant to thinking about and responding to pandemic situations. Extending beyond Covid-19, the volume considers the implications for ongoing and future research under pandemic restrictions and gives a broad overview of current anthropology relevant to questions about pandemics. It will be of interest to both academic and applied anthropologists, as well as to sociologists and those working in global and public health.

    1 Anthropological responses to pandemics

    Helen Lambert, Jude Robinson and Simone Abram

    2 On Epidemiological consciousness and COVID-19: Envisioning vulnerability, hazard, and public health policy in Aotearoa New Zealand and the United Kingdom

    Nicholas Long et al. Nicholas J. Long, Pounamu Jade Aikman, Nayantara Sheoran Appleton, Sharyn Graham Davies, Antje Deckert, Edmond Fehoko, Eleanor Holroyd, Naseem Jivraj, Megan Laws, Nelly Martin-Anatias, Michael Roguski, Nikita Simpson, Rogena Sterling, Susanna Trnka, and Laumua Tunufa’i

    3 COVID-19 in Africa: pandemic preparedness and response

    Hayley MacGregor, Melissa Leach, Alice Desclaux, Catherine Grant, Fred Martineau, Melissa Parker, Kelley Sams and Khoudia Sow

    4 Modelling the new "Social": The evolution of risk assessments and mathematical modelling during the "first wave" of the pandemic

    Michelangelo Paganopoulos

    5 Digital, experimental, collaborative – Covid19’s methodological consequences

    Brit Winthereik and Anders Munk

    6 Connected by Isolations: Overlaps, refractions and difference in a four-fold view of lockdown inequality in Scotland

    Lucy Pickering and Sarah Armstrong

    7 Lockdown and livelihoods in rural South India: Rethinking patronage and care at the time of COVID-19

    Geert De Neve, Grace Carswell, Nidhi Subramanyam and Satiyanarayan Yuvaraj

    8 Care And Surveillance - The Good Citizens Of Covid-19

    Daniel Miller

    9 Facing uncertainty: The social life of face coverings during a pandemic

    Juan Zhang, Helen Lambert and Binjuan Liu

    10 Afterword: Pandemic, Hope and Anthropological Praxis

    Andrew Dawson and Simone Dennis


    Simone Abram is Professor in Anthropology at the University of Durham, and chair of ASA 2020–2024. Recent book publications include Energy Futures, Electrifying Anthropology, and Ethnographies of Power.

    Helen Lambert is Professor of Medical Anthropology in the Department of Population Health Sciences, University of Bristol. Her research interests include antimicrobial resistance, Asian medical systems, and global public health.

    Jude Robinson is a social anthropologist researching the lives of women and children living in resource-limited settings in the UK and countries in East Africa. Her current research focuses on using gendered theory to explore how people maintain their physical and mental health in diverse settings; health in the context of climate change; and health hygiene and water insecurity.