Late breaking call for Submissions “Giving Shape to COVID-19 through Anthropological Lenses”. Round Two.

COVID-19 Pandemica: (Anti) Sociality and the Longevity Question


Following our successful call for papers that we circulated last year in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic and published in our last issue, we now call for submissions related to the long-term social effects of what has become a long-lasting pandemic. In January 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported the viral infection outbreak in China to be caused by a “novel coronavirus.” By March 2020 Europe was declared the epicenter of the pandemic, and by August the WHO had already convened four meetings of the International Emergency Committee on COVID-19 to uphold their recommendations in addressing the public health emergency of international concern. Now nearly two years since the WHO’s report, countries around the world continue the battle to stop the spread of infection after populations have faced second, third, and now fourth waves or surges in the numbers of people infected, sick, hospitalized, and dying of COVID-19. The physiological effects of the disease are also stretched out over time, as in the “Long COVID” syndrome.

Neologisms such as “COVID fatigue,” “quaranteams,” and “covidiot” have become as common in the public imagination as the more conventional pandemic terminology, such as “community spread,” “herd immunity,” and “self-isolation.” These terms suggest the social relations, relationality, and (anti)sociability underpinning the ways in which the pandemic has taken diverse cultural, social, affective, creative, artistic, and expressive forms in these past long and unrelenting months. Anthropologists are well situated to observe and reflect on the social effects of the longevity question of the COVID-19 pandemic. “How are you doing?” has become a question that, perhaps like in no other time in recent history, reflects a phenomenon affecting the world’s population, and is therefore as much a collective-orientated question as it is one that is deeply personal, localized, and individual.

For our COVID-19 Round Two Call for Papers we seek ethnographically-grounded papers that provide insights into the social dimensions of the pandemic’s longevity from any number of approaches. In doing so, the papers will also speak to current conversations in the discipline, and beyond, related to sociality—such as, relations and ethics of care, health, intimacy, proximity, pollution, temporality, subjectivity, human-nonhuman, more-than-human, materiality, technology, commodification, and consumption, to name only a few. Submissions should be no longer than 8,000 words, as per the journal’s guidelines for full length articles, but can also be shorter pieces of 4,000 to 5,000 words. We encourage all forms of ethnographic writing including photo essays and ethnographic poetry. Submissions will undergo double blinded peer-review. We encourage contributions from Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour scholars. Submissions in French are also welcome.

Because we aim to publish this set of papers in our May 2022 issue, the timeline is tighter than usual. The firm deadline for submission is November 15th. Feel free to query the editorial team with your idea before submitting.