How Covid-19 Signals the End of the American Era
Wade Davis holds the Leadership Chair in Cultures and Ecosystems at Risk at the University of British Columbia. His award-winning books include “Into the Silence” and “The Wayfinders.” His new book, “Magdalena: River of Dreams,” is published by Knopf. Never in our lives have we experienced such a global phenomenon. For the first time in the history of the world, all of humanity, informed by the unprecedented reach of digital technology, has come together, focused on the same existential threat, consumed by the same fears and uncertainties, eagerly anticipating the same, as yet unrealized, promises of medical science. In a single season, civilization has been brought low by a microscopic parasite 10,000 times smaller than a grain of salt. Our interventions to date have largely focused on mitigating the rate of spread, flattening the curve of morbidity. Pandemics and plagues have a way of shifting the course of history, and not always in a manner immediately evident to the survivors.
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