With rapid changes in the world, it can be easy to see how this might be a notable historical moment that people in the future will look back on.
But, I cannot help think of the sociological processes that we are seeing at play right now. Pandemics and diseases have come before yet not in the era of such globalization, Internet and smartphones, and particular political, economic, and social conditions. There will be history about this all but here are just a few of the sociological processes we are truly seeing in action:
-Globalization. The travel and interconnectedness that is normal now has particular implications for diseases as well as the consequences.
-The shift toward the Internet and smartphones enables new methods for work as well as the possibility of information and knowledge to go all sorts of directions.
-Political and economic consequences of social actions. As just one example, social distancing can help combat the pandemic but it threatens many taken-for-granted interactions and settings. Small talk and being around other people should not be taken for granted; they are part of the social order.
-Health is a social issue, from its definition to how it plays out in individual lives and societies.
And this is just a start. There is already a lot of opinions out there about how the pandemic will change society once the disease disappears. We will have to wait and see. Sure, this will all be history at some point but for now there are a lot of sociological material to think through.