Everyday Life in the Covid-19 Pandemic: Mass Observation's 12th May Diaries (Hardcover)
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How will the Covid-19 pandemic be remembered? What did it mean to people? How did it feel? This book provides a compelling account of the pandemic as it was experienced in the UK.Everyday Life in the Covid-19 Pandemic is a democratic history based on the 5,000 diaries collected by Mass Observation on 12 May 2020. It is a record of what many of these diarists wrote, from a wide range of positions, in a variety of voices and on a wealth of different subjects. The book shines a light on their lives on the day in question, their experiences during the first two months of the pandemic, and their hopes and fears for the coming months and years. The diaries capture much of everyday life in the pandemic for millions of people in the UK and beyond: the activities, events, and rituals (from funerals to working from home); the sites and stages (from shops to Zoom); the roles and categories (from 'key workers' to 'vulnerable groups'); the frames (from luck to 'the new normal'); and the moods (from anxiety to grief). In these diaries, we see what people did when the pandemic arrived in the UK, but also what people thought and felt - how they interpreted the pandemic experience and gave it meaning. We see both how the nation responded and the nation who responded. The book also includes two essays offering expert contextualisation of the diaries and discussion of their value for narrating the pandemic and presenting everyday life.