Anna Novikov (University of Greifswald, Germany). Pandemics for Patriots in the Time of Covid-19
In the last few months, Covid-19 has created not only a series of health, political, economic, family and individual psychological challenges, but also an aesthetic challenge that became a prominent symbol of this period: the face mask. Very soon the obligatory face masks started to play a role of ideological self-expression offline and in the virtual world. Visual sartorial messages to the audience is an essential part of political ideologies and the connection between dress and politics is far from new, so the masks became politicised too. In a locked-down world, face masks play the role of an ideological messenger, transmitting numerous appeals: from protest against state actions to patriotic state support and various forms of nationalist and populist messages. These masks are self- made or offered on online stores that sold ethnic or patriotic clothes before Covid-19. Besides the profit, these stores are answering the demand of the audience by supplying global patriotic trends, which existed on clothes before the pandemic and have been transferred to masks in local variations.