Possible Futures, Now

by Tawana Kupe (Pretoria)

Drawing from both traditions, universities are trying understand how it was that science largely missed the signs of Covid’s coming, and so fulfil their obligation to secure the long-term future of humanity on this planet.

But they know, too, that the university must rise to the immediate challenges of global health, education and economic crises; job losses; poverty; and the overriding sense of uncertainty and insecurity. These all existed pre-Covid, of course, but the pandemic has aggravated each with knock-on effects.

Noticias educativas from the international Mexican newsroom

by Alonso Casanueva Baptista

The secretariat of public education in Mexico – the institution in charge of the standardized schooling practices there – organized for the current semester to take place via radio, internet, but most importantly, television. From August 24th to the end of the school year (July 2021), thirty million Mexican students will enrol in school whilst relying on technologies that usually do not play a central role in their formal learning experiences. The written word will be overtaken by waves, signals, and connections.

Between the acts: at home in uncertain times

by Timothy Andrews

In the current pandemic, we find ourselves in a similar situation to that of Virginia Woolf’s audience in Between the Acts. Forced into our homes as a result of lockdown measures, a mirror is held up to us so that we can see the intimacy of our lives under the stark light of history unfolding in the present. Like Woolf’s audience, we too are on the cusp of a new era.

I can’t wait to see what it’s like on the outside now: a postcard from quarantine in downtown São Paulo

by Isabela Capovilla Romanetto and Matheus Capovilla Romanetto

That it was possible to dream in more depth is immediately related to how much more silent the city became. This is not only an effect of the absence of people on the streets, but also of changes in the mobility system, which for some time had less buses, and generally less cars around. Downtown São Paulo is an enemy of dream life.

Two Australias

by Tim Soutphommasane and Marc Stears (Sydney)

For the most part, the Australian government’s response has been effective in suppressing the numbers of infection since the virus was detected here in March 2020. There are, however, signs that we are now seeing a more worrying new phase of conservative ideological ascendency in Australia.