How to Build a Better New Normal Era beyond Covid-19
How to Build a Better New Normal Era beyond Covid-19
  • 경남타임즈(경남대학교)
  • 승인 2020.09.04 09:34
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Hwang Soon-hyang, Professor at Department of English Education

The human race is experiencing unprecedented changes in life with the Coronavirus pandemic. In many parts of the world, the COVID 19 crisis has led to an economic crisis, hatred of other peoples has brought about an ethical crisis, and so many futurists warn that human civilization will face frequent disasters caused by infectious viruses. In his book, The Future After COVID, Bloomberg's world's No. 1 futurist Jason Schenker diagnoses that human diseases and economic damage brought by COVID 19 are more than a disaster due to their potential and long-term effects, including the spread of diseases caused by an outbreak of COVID-19, the overload of medical services, the economic slowdown, and the changes in working patterns and consumption habits. Like this, the COVID-19 has shaken the structure of our economy and society, revealing the weaknesses of our civilization, and calls for a new economic and social order. Now people perceive this period as a historic moment when human civilization should be changed.

Many medical scientists and futurists are predicting that under the influence of COVID-19, we cannot go back to our previous lives and COVID-19 will certainly not be our last pandemic. And so the term "The New Normal Era" is being talked about, and many people wonder what will become the New Normal. Yuval Harari, a historian and professor of history, says the current period of the Corona crisis is time to correct the structure of the unjust world. His message means that if mankind can't control the inertia of the society that has brought about the corona crisis, the safety of life on the future Earth cannot be guaranteed. And so we are now faced with the matters of settling the New Normal in as a new guideline of our society and forming a better New Normal Era that can ensure the safety of our future generations beyond COVID-19. It is time for us to change the biased cognition of our civilization based on development and profit to avoid repeating this crisis. Therefore this essay tries to explore these matters through the interviews of the seven global scholars by Ahn Hee-kyung, a Korean-American journalist who carried out a project researching the basic nature of the world after the COVID-19 from various angles and looking for the guidelines for the new normal era to create sustainable social formation in the future.

An American economic and social theorist, Jeremy Rifkin, one of the scholars interviewed by Ahn Hee-kyung, says that the virus crisis resulted from the destruction of the ecosystem caused by the current economic order focusing on development and profit and climate change which is the side effect of fossil fuels. He strongly suggests 'de-fossil fuel civilization' and 'green New Deal' as solutions for the future world community. He also calls for a shift from a globalized economic structure vulnerable to crisis response of global problems to 'Glocalization' based on a regional scale. A few other scholars also demonstrate a fairly common perception with Rifkin in these issues. Vandana Shiva, an environmental activist of Echo feminism also warns with a grim outlook that if climate change issues are not seriously taken care of, more infectious diseases will flourish in the future and half of the species on Earth will disappear in a decade. In addition, the Chinese agricultural economist Wen Zhengjun also diagnoses that the failure of globalization has become clear since the Coronavirus Pandemic and that the movement of excess products has been blocked due to the breakdown of the global industrial chain, which has led to the expansion of political, economic, and social crises, bringing about the "crisis of globalization. And so he proposes a new trend, called 'Glocalization' as a solution to this issue. As we can see, the scholars mentioned above commonly suggest that a new road map centered on the Green New Deal and Glocalization is needed to break away from the crisis of civilization caused by ecological destruction and the current economic order. The message they want to deliver about the better New Normal Era is that we must create new models for the New Normal based on green industry development, green ecosystem recovery, and green growth, for the green transformation of economic and social structures. They also call for the concerted efforts by the world's population to cope with the economic crisis, climate crisis, and environmental crisis at the same time.


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