Today we’re highlighting a rare bright spot in the coronavirus pandemic. In Mexico, some Indigenous communities have remained largely insulated from the country’s ferocious national COVID-19 outbreak. The Zapotec people in Oaxaca – one of Mexico’s poorest states – for example, have reported very few infections and deaths. Their secret, writes Ohio State University anthropologist Jeffrey H. Cohen, draws on centuries-old traditions of cooperation, isolation and self-reliance.

This week we also liked articles about how honeybee colonies fend off disease, the movie business and tipped workers.

Catesby Holmes

International Editor

Zapotec farmers return from their ‘milpa,’ the garden plots that provide much of the communities’ food, in Oaxaca, Mexico. Jeffrey H. Cohen

Indigenous Mexicans turn inward to survive COVID-19, barricading villages and growing their own food

Jeffrey H. Cohen, The Ohio State University

The Zapotec people of southern Mexico have always relied on each other to solve problems when the government can't, or won't, help. That's proving to be a pretty effective pandemic response.

The complex interactions that maintain group health inside a bee hive offer lessons for humanity during pandemics. Rachael Bonoan

Honeybees can’t practice social distancing, so they stay healthy in close quarters by working together

Rachael Bonoan, Providence College; Phil Starks, Tufts University

Life in a honeybee hive is all about cooperating for the collective good.

The wall of Moms group is the latest in a long tradition of mothers’ movements around the world. Alisha Jucevic via Getty Images / AFP via Getty Images

Video: The Wall of Moms builds on a long protest tradition

Kelsy Kretschmer, Oregon State University

By inflicting violence on protesting moms, governments only amplify the message of the movement they seek to quell.