Welcome - The Politics of Pandemics POLI 3510   The Politics of Pandemics
This course considers the relationship between plague and politics, both theoretically and in practice. We will consider some of the most pressing questions that contagion has posed to and revealed about the political communities they infect and affect. For example, what do contagions and the public crises they induce teach us about fear and risk in political life? How have and should political communities balance individual freedoms against collective well-being and what do these choices reveal about that polity’s deeper ethical and political commitments? Which pandemic responses strengthen communities and which contribute to their breakdowns? How do communities assign blame and responsibility for health crises and what are the larger socio-political repercussions of these choices? The course is divided into five units, with each unit lasting approximately two-three weeks. Over the semester students will also work in smaller groups to create multimedia presentations on a central political issue related to Covid-19 (such as migration and mobility, the economy and class division, labour and labour rights, globalization and transnational supply chains, race and marginalized groups, democratic participation and voting, surveillance and big-data tracing), which they will workshop with classmates in our final unit prior to a public launch at the end of term.
FORMAT: Seminar