Pandemic Perspectives 2021: Reflections on the Post-Covid World

Doctoral researchers at the University of Birmingham, the University of Edinburgh, and the University of Warwick are delighted to announce the Pandemic Perspectives Conference. This conference will engage with the cultural, political, economic, and societal implications of the Covid-19 pandemic. Taking an interdisciplinary approach to the post-Covid future, we aim to explore the historical and epistemological contexts of the global response, the pandemic’s potential ramifications in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, and how the virus has altered society at large. We invite participants to consider broad-ranging topics that span a variety of scales. Some topics that participants may consider include:

  • National and international responses
  • Globalisation in the post-Covid world
  • Historical precedents and their relevance today
  • Covid-19 and technology
  • Individual and group experiences of lockdown
  • Ecological impacts of Covid-19
  • Literature, arts, and representation during the pandemic
  • Optimism and pessimism in the time of Covid-19
  • Perspectives from the periphery
  • The politics and biopolitics of pandemics

Pandemic Perspectives is dedicated to an interdisciplinary and inclusive exchange of ideas, and we encourage submissions to this conference from fields as diverse as ancient and modern history, philosophy, theology, sociology, literature, art and economics. We are especially interested in contributions focusing on effects of the pandemic on marginalised peoples, groups, and communities, and the questions of futurity that the pandemic brings to them. Independent researchers outside of the academy are also invited to submit papers. 

We accept abstracts of up to 300 words for 15-minute-long papers (with an additional 5 minutes for questions) to be delivered on the day of the conference. Panel proposals comprising 3-4 papers are also welcome (to be no longer than 45 minutes in duration, to allow 15 minutes for questions). So too are proposals for 45-minute-long roundtable discussions (to be led by one of the presenters). Topics for papers, panels, or roundtable discussions might include, but need not be limited to, the bullet point list above.

Please send your abstracts (300 words) and short author biography of up to 150 words to pandemicperspectivesconference@gmail.com. If submitting a panel proposal, please include abstracts for each paper and biographies for each author. If proposing a roundtable discussion, please include one abstract for the discussion at large, and a biography for each speaker. The deadline for submissions is 5pm UK time on 26th February 2021. Participants will be notified of acceptance or rejection by 5pm UK time on 12th March 2021. The conference will be held on 20th April 2021.

Publication Opportunity

The Pandemic Perspectives Committee wishes to publish conference proceedings in a collected volume. Further information will be communicated to presenters closer to the time of the conference.

Conference Fee, Format, and Language

There is no fee to attend the conference. It will be conducted virtually. The conference language will be English and will be hosted from the UK.

The Pandemic Perspectives Group is an open interdisciplinary community of doctoral researchers from around the world. The group was founded by PhD researcher David Christie (University of Birmingham) with the aim of integrating the specialisms from a wide range of scholarly fields to interpret and analyse the unique significance of the pandemic in contemporary history. Following months of stimulating conversation and informal debate, the Pandemic Perspectives Group decided to organise a formal event in which scholars and researchers could bring their uniquely well-informed perspectives to a discussion of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Conference Committee

  • Sadegh Attari – PhD candidate (English Literature) at the University of Birmingham
  • David Christie – PhD candidate (Modern History) at the University of Birmingham
  • Hanan Fara – PhD candidate (Sociology of Religion) at the University of Birmingham
  • Niall Gallen – PhD candidate (English Literature) at the University of Birmingham
  • Richard Kendall – PhD candidate (Classics) at the University of Edinburgh
  • Liam J. L. Knight – PhD candidate (English Literature) at the University of Birmingham
  • Ronan Love – PhD candidate (History) at the University of Warwick

Further Information

For further information about Pandemic Perspectives, please visit our website (https://pandemic-perspectives-uk.com/) and Twitter page (@Pandemic_Persp). Tickets for non-speakers can be purchased from Eventbrite (https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/pandemic-perspectives-2021-reflections-on-the-post-covid-world-tickets-133031349347).


Photo by Edwin Hooper on Unsplash

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