2020: The year of ____

How do you sum up an entire year in a single word or phrase? This was the question that drove my first-ever collection of headlines that attempted to do so back in 2016 (the year of “Zika,” “Snapchat,” and “worst year in history” — little did we know).

Normally when I round up the internet’s attempts to distill the past 12 months, a pattern begins to emerge slowly, the way 2018 came to be defined by women and the aftershocks of #MeToo, or how 2017 was shaped by President Trump. Not so for 2020, when it is abundantly clear what event set the tone for the year.


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