"Pandemic society" online seminar

"Pandemic society" online seminar
Image credit: Ian Alan Paul https://www.ianalanpaul.com/ten-premises-for-a-pandemic/

This online seminar is the first of two panel sessions. The second session will be announced in the near future.

The COVID19 pandemic is transforming social relations. The virus’ immediate threat to health and life reveals human vulnerabilities in new ways. Meanwhile, is it our social responses that are changing the social order. Physical distancing is sparking profound shifts within the family, friendships, all forms of work and care, governmental and expert authority, society-nature metabolism, collective power and much more.

Social theorists have so far emphasised pandemic society’s heightened interdependencies and inequalities, as well as new forms of connectivity, value and cooperation. Crucially, social action will shape how we get through this crisis. Nothing about pandemic social organisation, or its long run impacts, is inevitable.

How is the pandemic changing society? What kinds of sociological thinking can help us come to terms with the changes before us? What kinds of post-pandemic social organisation appear possible now?

This open online seminar will run as two panel discussions bringing together sociologists at the ANU to reflect on the emerging social relations of the pandemic.


Professor Catherine Waldby


Maria Hynes – cooperative labour

James Chouinard – pedagogy

Gavin Smith – surveillance and technology

Rob Ackland - misinformation

Paul Jones – paranoid conspiracies

Helen Keane – health sociology, alcohol and harm

Jenny Davis – social psychology of zoom

Beck Pearse – social ecology of labour

Adrian MacKenzie – models

Melinda Cooper – bailout and ecosystemic crisis

Baptiste Brossard - TBA

Date & time

Mon 25 May 2020, 10–11.30am


online via zoom


School of Sociology


Updated:  14 May 2020/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications