The coronavirus crisis has compelled the Indian state to haphazardly effectuate a lockdown in order to properly practice social distancing. But it has unaccountably forgotten that social distancing is a privilege of the elite class if well-thought-out arrangements are not made.
The measures adopted in the face of the spread of COVID-19 in the world have caused billions of people to suddenly have excess “free time.” But this is not a full “free time,” conducive to the enjoyment and development of new skills, but a “time without work” that is exacerbating the enormous economic contradictions already existing in our society. Is it possible to imagine and bring about a form of free time that is truly human time?
Neither the coronavirus nor the ongoing climate changes are merely “acts of nature.” Rather both have emerged at this moment because humanity is grounded—entrapped—in the economic-social-political system(s) of capital/capitalism. It is the behemoth that we must examine: the monster we must free ourselves from.
How, on the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta, does that document speak to what workers and prisoners are facing today?