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Experiences of racism should kind a part of analysis of long-term affect of coronavirus social distancing, specialists say

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People’s experiences of racism and stigma previous to coronavirus should be thought of throughout any analysis of the affect of social distancing, specialists have stated.

A brand new research argues a type of social distancing as a consequence of racism and marginalization was acquainted to these from Black and minority ethnic backgrounds earlier than the coronavirus pandemic, and this was already resulting in discrimination and having a destructive impact on lives, livelihoods, socio-economic standing, well being, and well-being.

The research says this affect grew to become worse throughout COVID-19, which has illustrated that “racism and health are deeply co-implicated.”

The analysis printed in Puncta: Journal of Critical Phenomenology, was carried out by Luna Dolezal and Gemma Lucas from the University of Exeter.

Professor Dolezal stated, “The inequalities and well being disparities for minority ethnic teams that COVID-19 has uncovered are a part of a systemic and structural racism that has an extended historical past of taking lives. While the COVID-19 pandemic has created monumental challenges which have, in unprecedented methods, impacted populations throughout the globe, it’s essential that we acknowledge the methods during which the diploma of this affect is unequal due to pre-existing techniques of structural inequality.

“People’s social position, gender, ethnicity, race, or health status was not considered when social distancing measures were introduced. All bodies were given the same status as equally dangerous and equally vulnerable. In reality people are not homogenous, biological entities. Nor are we equally vulnerable. There is ample evidence demonstrating that social distancing public health measures put in place to curtail the spread of the virus, such as lockdowns and quarantines, exacerbated social and health inequalities.”

The analysis, written in autumn 2020 when social distancing measures have been nonetheless in impact within the UK, included evaluation of current writing and analysis on racism, together with these from Black and minority ethnic commentators who’ve described putting similarities between COVID-19 social distancing measures and the routine experiences of racism which are ongoing for minorities in white dominant societies. Many of the writings have been private experiences of seeing different folks preserve their distance from them earlier than the pandemic.

One author, Lisa Braxton, stated, “We’ve long practiced social distancing to keep ourselves safe and lessen our chances of a shortened life span: not because of a contagious disease, but because of racism … I have experienced white women suddenly clutch tightly onto their purse straps as I’ve walked past them on the sidewalk. Some have begun to visibly shake, their eyes growing wide, as if terrified, if I happened to make eye contact with them in an elevator.”

Gemma Lucas stated, “While social distancing may be alienating, isolating, and painful for people who occupy positions of social privilege, it is not going to be skilled in the identical method by those that routinely expertise marginalization due to racism. Face-to-face social distancing was acquainted already for many individuals whose our bodies are perceived to be suspicious or harmful due to, for instance, their race, class, or incapacity.

“Being seen as ‘contaminated’ and experiencing the wary avoidance of others may be familiar to people whose bodies are marginalized, stigmatized, or marked out as suspicious or dangerous and whose life experiences, as a result, were already marked by ongoing experiences of stigma, shame, and marginalization. This can include others moving away or locking car doors and being watched by security in shops.”

Experience of racism linked with poorer memory and thinking

More data:
Luna Dolezal and Gemma Lucas, Differential Experiences of Social Distancing: Considering Alienated Embodied Communication and Racism (2022)

Provided by
University of Exeter

Experiences of racism should kind a part of analysis of long-term affect of coronavirus social distancing, specialists say (2022, September 22)
retrieved 22 September 2022

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