This series of events considers the possibilities of the post-pandemic future. Bringing together writers, artists, curators, archivists, academics, and organizers, “COVID19 and its Afterlives,” examines how the structural dynamics that predated COVID19–precarity, vulnerability, inequality–have been exacerbated by this past catastrophic year. In inventorying our pre-pandemic social and political failures, from health care to housing to labor, policing to politics to prisons, this series hopes to help us learn the pandemic’s lessons, and works to illuminate the promises of the future.

Sponsored by NYU’s Office of Global Inclusion, Diversity, and Strategic Innovation, NYU’s Center for the Humanities, NYU Skirball, NYU’s Special Collections, Verso Books, n+1, and Minetta Creek Collective. Organized by David Sugarman with support from Daniel Cheng (Verso).

Logos: NYU Global Inclusion, Diversity, and Strategic Innovation; NYU Center for the Humanities; Verso; N+1; Minetta Creek Collective; A P A Institute; The Fales Library & Special Collections; The Taimiment LIbrary & Robert F Wagner Labor Archives

JUMP TO ESSAYSJUMP TO EVENTS

EVENTS

RSVP for upcoming events, or find videos of past events. 

OCT 28, 2021 @ 7PM ● ZOOM

THE 1918 PANDEMIC & ITS AFTERLIVES

Where does the history of an illness reside, both for individuals and for communities? Prof. Elizabeth Outka (University of Richmond) joins us to consider how modernist literature captures the subtle afterlives of such history in the wake of the 1918 pandemic–how illness and its memories ripple through language, bodies, and nations–and what last century’s catastrophic pandemic might teach us about the post-pandemic contemporary. Introduction by Dr. Lisa Coleman. Moderated by David Sugarman.  

NOV 3, 2021 @ 6:30PM ● ZOOM

COVID19 and its Afterlives, or: “Chinese Virus,” World Market Revisited

The respective trajectories of China, Asia, and the US during the global pandemic clarified and calcified current geopolitical tensions of political economy today. Prof. Andrew Liu joins us to consider the burgeoning talk of a new US-China “cold war,” debates over the origins of the novel coronavirus in China, ongoing obstacles in the global network of supply chains, and the overlap between questions related to the “rise of Asia” and the contradictions of Asian American identity. Moderated by Prof. Charmaine Chua.

NOV 11, 2021 @ 7PM ● ZOOM

The End of Policing

The summer of 2020 was a time of unprecedented anti-police action, with millions of Americans coming together to protest police violence. These protests were also responding to what the pandemic made clear: that socioeconomic precarity is itself a form of state sanctioned violence. This conversation between Prof. Alex Vitale (Brooklyn College) and Kay Gabriel considers the importance of this moment and the political possibilities it reveals. Moderated by Ben Mabie. 

DEC 3, 2021 @ 12PM ● ZOOM

THE FUTURE OF CARE

A panel discussion of the structural dynamics of the current care crisis and the impact of the COVID19 pandemic. This event inquires into the ways in which the cost of care continues to be off-loaded onto the underpaid working class and unpaid precariat, as Emma Dowling and members of the Care Collective consider what it would mean to seriously value care in our society. Moderated by Rosie Warren.

JAN 13, 2022 @ 3PM ● ZOOM

THE FUTURE OF WORK

The pandemic transformed our understanding of labor. Hospital workers saw dire shortages of staff and supplies, offices were emptied for “remote work,” and we watched as the already woeful conditions of our essential workers and industries worsened further.  Aaron Benanav and Grace Blakeley discuss the future of work in the light of the shifts the pandemic produced, the inequalities it exacerbated, and the precarities it laid bare. Moderated by Nicole Aschoff (Verso). 

March 28, 2022 @ 7PM IN PERSON

KEYNOTE: ON CRISIS WITH ELIZABETH HINTON

The pandemic undid a world already structured around the ubiquity of catastrophe. This series of keynote speakers will consider COVID19 as part of a recent history of ever-unfolding disasters. Moderated by Dr. Lisa Coleman.

IN PERSON IN 2022 - CHECK BACK FOR DATE & TIME

KEYNOTE: ON CRISIS WITH NANCY FRASER

The pandemic undid a world already structured around the ubiquity of catastrophe. This series of keynote speakers will consider COVID19 as part of a recent history of ever-unfolding disasters. Moderated by Dr. Lisa Coleman.

IN PERSON IN 2022 - CHECK BACK FOR DATE & TIME

Coming Outside

A slate of n+1 authors are invited to return to the essays they penned in the beginning of the pandemic which were published in there is no outside, a book released in the summer by Verso and n+1. Moderated by Mark Krotov.

READING

New pieces of writing commissioned for this series.

by Crystal Mun-hye Baik

Dear Set

This essay is part of the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU’s A/P/A Voices: A COVID19 Public Memory Project.

BY MINJU BAE

In Struggle and Love

In partnership with the Tamiment Library and Wagner Labor Archives, Minju Bae reflects upon the life of a mentor and friend.

BY ASIAN SEX WORKER ORGANIZER WITH RED CANARY SONG

CARE DURING COVID19

This essay is part of the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU’s A/P/A Voices: A COVID19 Public Memory Project.

BY MARIKA CIFOR

The AIDS Epidemic and its Afterlives: Frank Moore & the Labors of Activist Archiving

In partnership with the Downtown Collection at NYU’s Fales Library, Marika Cifor engages with archival materials related to the afterlives of the AIDS epidemic, and considers these in relation to the experience of the COVID19 pandemic.