The haunting figure of the useless academic: Critical thinking in coronavirus time
EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF CULTURAL STUDIES | SAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD | Published : 2020
A critical intellectual, someone whose job is to think, reflect and critique can be the last thing one needs in times of practical urgency. If anything such people can be a hindrance to the recovery effort. Pardoxically, in such times, critical intellectuals are more necessary than ever. Pandemics, for instance, invite war metaphors, and unleash reactionary themes of ‘cohesion’, ‘unity’ and ‘common purpose’ that require being challenged. To be a critical intellectual in such times is to be aware of, and learn how to negotiate, such a contradiction.