Covid-19: Reframing Ageing

Anne Fuchs, Desmond O’Neill, Mary Cosgrove, and Julia Langbein // Report on the Interdisciplinary Webinar, University College Dubin, 12 June 2020 Introduction The Covid-19 crisis gave rise to stories of sickness and resilience, unemployment and solidarity, death and hope.  But from among these stories, the discourse on older people has been among the most controversial…

An Ethical Question from Sunflowers: A New Take on Nanette

Austin M. Hopkins // In her critically-acclaimed Netflix special Nanette, comic Hannah Gadsby begins her first show for a mainstream American audience with the playful autobiographical content which founded her home career in Australia. She makes self-deprecating but inherently uncomfortable jokes concerned with her identity as a lesbian woman. But as she continues into territory…

Vaccine Hesitancy and Social Justice in a Time of COVID-19

Kelly McGuire // At left: an image of a lottery machine, half-filled with numbered balls. Housebound citizens watch anxiously on televisions, waiting for their birth date to be called, disappointment mounting as it becomes clear their vaccination will now be happening fairly late in the process. The lottery itself is overseen by a military official…

Imperfect Measures: Notes on Humanization

Emily Waples// 1. In the beginning, I refresh endlessly. A thumb hovering over a search bar icon. An enter key tentatively pressed over a web address. Coronavirus update. There are always open tabs: the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Dashboard, the CDC case data, the New York Times’s coronavirus map. You can watch the red dots bleed…

Aging Together and Apart: From the Pivot to the Pirouette

Sally Chivers // With COVID-19, what scholars and activists of aging have long feared and warned about has come about. Global supply chains are indeed too easily choked off, leaving both the rich and poor poorer, though still not to the same extent. The stealthy and overt privatization of health care, particularly in the long-term…

Is the Face Mask a Muzzle? A Brief History

Don James McLaughlin// On June 26, a video began circulating of a man growling “I will not be muzzled like a mad dog” at a special meeting of the St. Lucie County Commission in Florida, held to discuss a proposal for a face mask mandate. Bared teeth notwithstanding, commissioners voted to approve the ordinance on…

Proust in Pandemic: Part II

Catherine Parker // Proust and Medicine Prior to undertaking the project to read In Search of Lost Time in the coronavirus era, the only biographical fact I knew about Proust was that he insisted on completing his landmark novel in the cocoon of a cork-lined room—an idiosyncratic signature—but perhaps one that would have resonated in…

Pedagogy of the Pandemic: Narrative Medicine and Radical Empathy

Sayantani DasGupta, Author // Ibraim Nascimento, Painter // There is a rupture in higher education and in that rupture is an opportunity. As novelist Arundhati Roy (2020) has written, “Historically, pandemics have forced humans to break with the past and imagine their world anew. This one is no different. It is a portal, a gateway…

Rethinking the Language of Cancer Diagnosis

Steffi Mac // Recently, I was introduced to a young doctor who had survived cancer and who is now working on Covid-19 duty. I wanted to interview her in order to present her narrative in my online initiative for cancer survivors, The Marrow Story. I was also trying to understand the health care system of…