A Pandemic and the Politics of Life


Women Unlimited, New Delhi, 2021

Language: English

208 pages

22 x 14 x 1.5 cms

Price INR 450.00
Book Club Price INR 360.00
INR 450.00
In stock
Over one hundred million infections, and two million deaths, worldwide, with more than ten million cases and a lakh-and-a-half deaths in India. A Pandemic and the Politics of Life unravels the specifics of the Indian experience of battling COVID-19, while adopting an international perspective, in order to analyse the why and how of this public health emergency; the neoliberal response by the state; the production of an unanticipated politics of life; and the dramatic desire for a new kind of public power. Written during an intense time, this monograph closely follows the progress of the virus, focusing on three themes: (i) the outbreak as an epidemiological crisis compounded by an economic crisis, a migrant crisis, and a political crisis; (ii) the presence of the marching migrant as the figure of this crisis; and (iii) the emergence of bio-politics from below as a reaction of the lower classes. Over twelve months into 'fighting' this deadly virus, we now have a remedy in the form of a vaccine—but is that all the remedy we need? The author raises and answers some critical questions around the way issues of life and death are negotiated in a neoliberal order, and on what we mean by care, protection and solidarity in a post-COVID-19 world.

Ranabir Samaddar

Ranabir Samaddar is a leading social scientist and director of the Calcutta Research Group. He is known for his work on issues of migration, peace and human rights, belongs to the school of critical thinking and is considered one of the foremost theorists in the field of forced migration studies. The much-acclaimed The Politics of Dialogue was a culmination of his long work on justice, rights and peace.