The COMELA 2020 will be held on September 2-5, at the American College of Greece, in Athens.
The past few months have seen the COVID-19 virus disrupt the globe as a pandemic unprecedented in modern time, and has forced a change in lifestyle, economy, law, and academic and educational approaches. It is everyone’s hope that solutions to the adverse consequences of COVID-19 are immediately found, and The COMELA is at the fore of efforts to seek solutions. It is The COMELA’s job to disseminate Sociological and Anthropological information pertaining to the virus and its effects on global society. It is also The COMELA’s hope that the virus is eradicated effectively, efficiently, and with minimized devastation.
The COMELA 2020 in Greece in September, we believe, will be at a time when the Corona virus has been fully contained and eradicated, and when we can look back and see the virus as a past occurrence, while we again live as we did prior to the virus, knowing that we can once again interact with freedom. The COMELA 2020 aims to ground understandings of, and the application of, these new global networks, where people globally network and subsequently engage in academic thought and praxis. We are certain that The COMELA 2020 conference will be at a time when people will again interact in freedom, and not in patent fear of the virus. The conference will be, we are certain, at a time when we as a world have grown significantly to develop renewed consciousnesses of the benefits of social interaction, the difficulties of isolation, and new ways of applying online technologies for the betterment of humanity. As such, humanity will become more effectively predisposed so as to resolve and even counter adversities that alter our lifestyles and that may effect such a global panic.
The world was not yet fully prepared to leave its face to face interactivity, and to be forced to operate solely through the medium of technology, but we have learnt. We have had to opt for the still insufficient interconnectivity and to make do with what our affordances, so as to resolve medical and governmental stringencies, and to maintain our level-headedness. It is no overstatement that governments, at many times rightly so, have enforced very strict laws so as to maintain the safety of global societies, and to attempt to control the COVID-19. However, the avenues through which to effect this control over the virus remain limited, and these include academic scholarly work. Here, The COMELA, as a fully non-profit organization, comes in, by presenting scholarship that tackles the virus, and pandemics such as this, as well as other issues that seek to adversely disrupt our lifestyles, but with the knowledge that one day, we will have developed immensely as a multitude of cohesive societies, and thus as humans. We will look back and view our trajectories as a global society which has new knowledges, new literacies, and new conceptions of itself as a society, and will reflexively view ourselves as a grown humanity, the maturation of which has been a forced one, but a beneficial one nonetheless.
Throughout the past few months, most if not all of the world has spent a substantial amount of time assessing factors that range from the explicit, such as the economy, health, and confinement, to the implicit such as self-worth, arrogances and benevolences, and the reality of a technologically mediated society and how it will alter our beings as a human society. We have had to reassess our subjectivities, our histories, and our futures, throughout this period, and to come to terms with our potentials as the human race, only to realize that while we do have immense potential to evolve, in a short space of time, we also have limited capacities, which can be overcome, through knowledge and through truths. As such, one lesson we have learnt through the virus pandemic is that, without truths, we suffer as a global society, and not in specific regions. should one part of the world conceal, distort, or fabricate the truth, we all suffer and must compensate for this deceit.
The processes of the world are neither fully circular, linear, nor random and haphazard. Rather, they are contingent on many sets of dynamics, their semiotics, and agencies, on which we are required to comply at times. These scapes affect us all, and require us to both conform to their agencies, and to try to negotiate global processes so as to ultimately have them conform to our needs. It is wrong to make positivist and simplistic statements such as that we are seeing circular processes, or linear processes, or random processes, and we must come to terms with this, if we are to counter the Corona Virus, other pandemics, and other crises. There are mechanisms at work both natural and man-made, which we must wake up to, and which we must tap into in order to resolve issues of humanity. We have an aversion to change, but we must wake up to change, and to embrace it, whether circular, linear, or random. At the same time, we must learn to accommodate to altered spatialities and temporalities, such as the increased spaces that regulate our socializations, and the accelerated usage of time emerging from our panicked states and from our lives of intensified levels of new technologies.
We do what we can, and what we are prepared to do, but we can do much more, as a humanity working in unison, yet as individuals with our own insecurities and agencies. We are a human race that seeks to explore the world, the cosmos, and yet the inner human, through the many strands that have evolved in what we call science, humanity, and spirituality. The COMELA is at the centre of Anthropological work in these explorations, and is working with the world, to solve the COVID-19 crisis, to contend with forces both positive and adverse, and to effect positive shifts, the world over.
The COMELA, March 25th, 2020