A series of ‘in conversation’ events exploring the many historical perspectives through which we can view, and better understand, the current coronavirus pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic sheds light on the history of “facemask diplomacy”, in which contagion and epidemic become prisms through which power rivalries, tensions and aspirations are conducted – international politics wearing a facemask.
Analogies to the Second World War are a recurring theme in modern British history. The seeming orthodoxy in Britain in 2020 is that the nation is at war, on a scale not known since the Second World War. The enemy, this time the coronavirus, is invisible to the naked eye.
The sixteenth-century struggle to balance biological and economic well-being implicated a surprising number of authorities, but not everyone accepted their discipline. Matthew Vester explores in Pandemic Politics During the Renaissance.
Bruce Campbell argues that interactions between climate and disease during the fourteenth-century Black Death can inform insights into Covid-19 and alter historians’ understanding of the nature of historical change.
What can the British provincial press tell us about the way pandemics have historically been experienced at a local level? Andrew Jackson proposes that such coverage offers vital insights into community-led responses to global public health crises in 1918 and 2020.
Martin Plaut unearths a Radical Object: the badge struck to commemorate the Spanish flu pandemic that followed the First World War.