COVID-19 is still with us—but photos published so far this year show us how life goes on, for better and for worse.

Photograph by Joshua Rashaad McFadden, National Geographic

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Alena Battle of Charlotte, North Carolina, holds her son, Tamaj Bulloch, during the “Get Your Knee Off Our Necks” Commitment March in Washington, D.C., on Aug. 28, 2020. The event, on the 57th anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, honored the original protest while emphasizing the work still to be done, especially for police and criminal justice reform.

Photograph by Joshua Rashaad McFadden, National Geographic

COVID-19 is still with us—but photos published so far this year show us how life goes on, for better and for worse.


Introduction by Eve Conant

Photos curated by Whitney Johnson,

Director of Visuals and Immersive Experiences


PUBLISHED

“It was important to me that I become part of history,” said Schcola Chambers of Miami, Florida, who joined the “Get Your Knee Off Our Necks” march protesting for racial justice in Washington, D.C., this past August. This has certainly been a year for making history—for those who are actively protesting for change, for those fighting or fleeing the wildfires raging through the West, and for our entire global population still firmly in the grips of the COVID-19 pandemic. Images of this year range from tragic to inspiring: funerals for COVID-19 victims, pilgrims taking selfies in India, drones capturing never-before-seen views of Mount Everest, and essential workers still risking their health and their lives to treat us when we are sick and to keep food on our plates.




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Alem Bekele, Herani Bekele, and Bayza Anteneh stand in front of the Lincoln Memorial during the “Get Your Knee Off Our Necks” Commitment March in Washington, D.C., on Aug. 28, 2020. “We’re out here because we’re tired of injustice, and we’re here to make a difference for future generations,” Alem Bakele said.




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“It was important to me that I become part of history,” said Schcola Chambers of Miami, Florida, during August’s “Get Your Knee Off Our Necks” Commitment March in Washington, D.C. “And [to] show my grandkids and their grandkids that this is love in action.”




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A photograph of George Floyd, killed by Minneapolis, Minnesota, police officers, is projected onto the graffitied Robert E. Lee Monument in Richmond, Virginia. Erected in 1890, the statue memorializes Virginian Confederate General Robert E. Lee.




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Adam Canaday, who portrays a journeyman coach driver, stands with his horse, Commodore, at Colonial Williamsburg in Williamsburg, Virginia. He is one of dozens of historical interpreters of color who work at the living-history site.




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This is the first year that youth activist Winter BreeAnne, a student at Howard University in Washington, D.C., will be old enough to vote for president. A veteran of several get-out-the-vote campaigns, the Riverside, California, teen has developed a program to promote civic engagement among youths.




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Sa Calobra is a cove in the municipality of Escorca, on the island of Mallorca, Spain. The largest of Spain’s Balearic Islands, Mallorca has struggled with over-tourism for decades. The cove of Sa Calobra is one of the few ways to access the sea from the Serra de Tramuntana, a mountain range designated a UNESCO World Heritage site under the Cultural Landscape category for its centuries-old terraced farming in steep terrain.




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A burnt pickup truck, covered by fire retardant, lies among the remains of Oregon’s Talent Mobile Home Estates. Only a handful of homes in the Estates survived the Alameda Fire, which burned through the towns of Talent and Phoenix in southern Oregon.




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A blueberry picker gathers fruit at Atlantic Blueberry Co. in Mays Landing, New Jersey, where most workers live on site and make between $10.30 and $13.20 an hour. Workers continued to collect the harvest and work during the COVID-19 pandemic.




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Physician Gerald Foret (at right) dons a protective mask before seeing COVID-19 patients at Our Lady of the Angels Hospital in Bogalusa, Louisiana.




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At St. Eugene Catholic Church in Grand Chenier, Louisiana, marsh cane and mud brought inland by storm surge from Hurricane Laura are strewn across pews. As the land sinks and seas rise in Louisiana, the waters of the Gulf of Mexico are seeping closer and closer to communities.




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New York City’s nearly deserted Park Avenue—normally filled with a flurry of yellow taxis, motorbike messengers, and pedestrians—is a dramatic example of how efforts to slow the spread of coronavirus have emptied city centers.




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Women strain to haul precious water from a well in Dongra, in India’s desert state of Rajasthan. Wells such as this have replaced ancient stepped structures, where women had to walk down hundreds of stairs to reach available underground water.