London School of Economics and Political Science: LSE Press releases new open access book on Covid-19 in Southeast Asia

COVID-19 presented huge challenges to governments, businesses, civil societies, and people from all walks of life. But its impact was highly variegated, affecting society in multiple negative ways, with uneven geographical and socioeconomic patterns across Southeast Asia. The crisis revealed existing contradictions and inequalities in society, compelling us to question what it means to return to ‘normal’, and exploring what insights can be gleaned from Southeast Asia for thinking about a post-pandemic world. The volume contributes to the ongoing efforts to de-centre and decolonise knowledge production.

Three themes of wide relevance are explored across many Southeast Asia countries:

Urbanisation, infrastructures, economies, and the environment
Migrants, (im)mobilities, and borders, and
Collective action, communities, and mutual aid.
Professor Roger H Keil, York University, Canada says: “This important collection is the first regionally focused, yet universally relevant, set of essays to explain the geographical and social dimension – cause, effect, response – of the COVID-19 pandemic. Empirically grounded, yet theoretically generative, the superb and comprehensive COVID-19 in Southeast Asia is an indispensable resource and an encyclopedic snapshot of life during a global health emergency.”

The Editors have brought together 40 social scientists across many countries, within and outside the region. The contributors come from area studies, development studies, and legal scholars; anthropologists, architects, economists, geographers, planners, sociologists, and urbanists. They also represent academic institutions, activist and charitable organisations, policy and research institutes, and practitioners who recognise the necessity of critical commentary and engaged scholarship.

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