The story of the pandemic is the story of women. This riveting narrative offers an account of COVID-19, reminding us of women's leadership and resilience, reflecting back hope and humanity as we all figure out a new normal, together.
Throughout history, men have fought, lost, and led us through the world's defining crises. That all changed with COVID-19. In Canada, women's presence in the response to the pandemic has been notable. Women are our nurses, doctors, PSWs. Our cashiers, long-haulers, cooks. In Canada, women are leading the fast-paced search for a vaccine. They are leading our provinces and territories. At home, they are leading families through self-isolation, often bearing the responsibility for their physical and emotional health. They are figuring out what working from home looks like, and many of them are doing it while homeschooling their kids. Women crafted the blueprint for kindness during the pandemic, from sewing masks to kicking off international mutual-aid networks. And, perhaps not surprisingly, women have also suffered some of the biggest losses, bearing the brunt of our economic skydive.
Through intimate portraits of Canadian women in diverse situations and fields, Women of the Pandemic is a gripping narrative record of the early months of COVID-19, a clear-eyed look at women's struggles, which highlights their creativity, perseverance, and resilience as they charted a new path forward during impossible times.
LAUREN MCKEON is deputy editor of Reader's Digest Canada and the author of two books, F-Bomb and No More Nice Girls. Formerly the digital editor at The Walrus and the editor of This Magazine, her feature work has been recognized several times at the National Magazine Awards, including four honourable mentions, one silver, and a gold in the personal journalism category. She has taught long-form writing at Humber College and has an MFA in Creative Non-Fiction from the University of King's College. Her work has appeared in the anthologies Whatever Gets You Through and Best Canadian Essays, and in Toronto Life, Chatelaine, Hazlitt, and The Walrus. She lives in Toronto.