This major new long read series aims to provide original and thought-provoking ideas on the future of society, from voting rights and the climate crisis to the way we eat and how we think about death.
The project, developed as part of the Guardian’s 200th anniversary, will feature essays by world-leading experts, journalists, academics and writers as they reflect on the impact of the pandemic and consider how society might rethink and adapt in the future.
Launching yesterday (Tues 16 Nov), David Runciman, professor of politics at Cambridge University, outlines how Covid-19 has exacerbated the already enormous age divide in our society – and why he believes one solution is to allow children to vote.
In his essay, Runciman writes: “I believe there is a strong case for lowering the voting age to six, effectively extending the franchise to any child in full-time education.”
Reconstruction after Covid is inspired by Reconstruction in Europe; a series of essays on the economic revival of postwar Europe that was commissioned by Guardian editor CP Scott in 1921 and edited by the economist John Maynard Keynes. Published by the Guardian in 1922, the series featured major contributions from leading economists, politicians and Nobel laureates, as well as Keynes himself.
Upcoming essays in the Reconstruction after Covid series include: Guardian columnist Rebecca Solnit on how to confront the climate crisis without losing hope; Kwame Anthony Appiah, professor of philosophy at New York University on how to avoid a repeat of the ‘shadow pandemic’ that has blighted the developing world over the past two years; Jill Lepore, professor of American history at Harvard University, on the future of society after Covid; Jacqueline Rose, co-director of the Birkbeck Institute, exploring how the pandemic might prompt us to rethink death; and author and journalist Bee Wilson on why we need a national food policy.
Other leading journalists, authors and academics set to write Guardian long reads as part of the Reconstruction after Covid series include Gary Younge, Suketu Mehta, Emily Bell and Shoshana Zuboff.
Katharine Viner, editor-in-chief, Guardian News & Media says: “Covid 19 has exposed just how broken our societies are – from inequality and loneliness, to the climate crisis and racial injustice. In the Guardian’s 200th year, Reconstruction after Covid takes inspiration from CP Scott and John Maynard Keynes’s groundbreaking essay series published a century ago, to tell a new story about what can be done to rebuild a better world in the wake of the pandemic.”
David Wolf, editor of The Guardian Long Read, says: “As we slowly begin our recovery, Reconstruction after Covid will explore how the world has navigated coronavirus, and how we can ensure the crisis does not go to waste. The pieces we have coming up over the next few weeks are extremely varied, but they are all united by their clarity and boldness. One of our priorities in commissioning the series was to make sure the writing itself was a pleasure to read, and we're thrilled with the roster of wonderful writers who are contributing to the series.”
Reconstruction after Covid launched on the Guardian yesterday, with new articles in the series due to be published over the coming weeks.
Keep up-to-date with publishing news: sign up here for InPubWeekly, our free weekly e-newsletter.