Post Covid-19 Norming

DQ 3 Chapter 3 | Post Covid-19 Norming
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I know that some people are sort of “Covid – over it” at this point in time, but not Sociologists – who study and attempt to understand not only people’s behavior and attitudes, but how the norms of our society are established and how they change.  As folks in my field look at society and hear people make reference to what will become the new normal, we think of a new normal in terms of social norms and how social norms might change.

I would like you to keep thinking like a Sociologist now and focus on norms (norms are the rules of society that we learn through instructions from the adults who rear and influence us [families, friends, teachers, etc.]).  These norms help us know how to be, how to act, and what is expected of us.  As we get a bit older, we are likely to find others who we consider role models – who emulate other norms for us.  In other words, we continue to be influenced by others as we grow and mature, and try to keep our behavior within the limits of expectations that will generally keep us from being really disapproved of.

Here is the question I want you to ponder here – looking at norms and norm changes that will be part of the new normal.  What norms are likely to change, based on what is likely to be at least the year-long (maybe longer) experience that we are having during this time of Covid-19. ( 9/1/2020 – I added an article from the NYT  ” Were All Socially Awkward Now” – that addresses this issue.)

I have wondered about many aspects of life that are affected by social distancing (Are touching and hugging as part of greetings gone?) and virtual communications, but also norms around appearance.  We have seen ‘famous’ people on zoom conversations go back to natural hair color, little or no make-up, and generally appearance that is far less than perfect.  Will that last when we can go out as freely as we once did – or will we ever again be able to go out with the freedom we have pre-Covid-19?  Perhaps perfection will not be so much a goal in the future (or is that too much to hope)?

What ‘norms’ do you think will change, or do you think nothing will be different when we get to the end of this era of Covid-19?


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