Archive Fevers, Archive Cures: Leprosy and Decolonization in Hawaii

Bassam Sidiki // In the summer of 2019, a mere months before the pandemic would dramatically alter our lives, I boarded a plane from Detroit to Honolulu. I had received a pre-doctoral research grant to visit the Hawaii National Archives where they keep papers of the Kalaupapa Leper Settlement on the island of Molokai. This…

Im(m/p)unity as Defense: The Killing of John Allen Chau

Bassam Sidiki // The story made international headlines and invited global condemnation of the figure at its center. On November 16, 2018, a 26-year-old American missionary was killed by members of an uncontacted tribe on North Sentinel Island, a part of India’s Andaman and Nicobar Islands archipelago in the Bay of Bengal. The young missionary…

Medical Violence and the Medieval “Miracle of the Black Leg”

Micah James Goodrich // CW: Visual and textual depiction of violence against a Black body The legends of Saints Cosmas and Damian, the patron saints of medicine, pharmacy, and surgery, are dramatic miracles to the highest degree. These early Christian martyrs lived and died in the third century, in what is now modern-day Syria. As…

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…

Hierarchies of Care in Quarantine

Sara Press // In early June, the New York City Department of Health confirmed that the first dog in the United States had tested positive for Covid-19.[1] Few details were known about the dog beyond his location, his breed, and his prognosis—it was believed he would recover. However, on July 11th, the details of this…

Understanding race in a pandemic

Sasheenie Moodley // Dr. Ebony Hilton explains that there is a painful intersection between the Covid-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter protests in the United States. That is, pandemic and protest are part of the same disease thread—racial prejudice and racial adversity. Dr. Ebony Hilton is an anesthesiologist and associate professor at the University…

Already Quarantined: Yes, the “Spanish” Flu was Racist Too

Salvador Herrera // After the outbreak of racialized violence against Asian communities across the world, President Donald Trump, his staff, and supporters maintained that calling the COVID-19 disease “the Chinese virus” is harmless and has nothing to do with race.[1] Their willful ignorance attributes the phrase to the supposed source of the virus. However, the…