“Proper to Throw it Out”: The Bristol Electors, Edmund Burke and the Relocation of a Statue of Edward Colston to the Bottom of the River Frome

Until this Sunday two statues stood in Bristol’s historic Centre. Both statues were cast at the end of the nineteenth century, both of single-term MPs for the city: you might be forgiven for wondering what it was about the 1890s that had made Bristol so nostalgic for men it hadn’t wanted to re-elect. Growing up… | Read on »

Canada, COVID, and Police Brutality: The Experience of the Black Community

Protests are sweeping across the United Sates due to the public murder of African American George Floyd by Minneapolis police. Cities have risen up in response. The federal government and US states and municipalities have responded with tremendous use of force to shut down demonstrations and silence protestors thereby, denying them their First Amendment rights…. | Read on »

The COVID-19 Exposure

As published in ZNet, June 6, 2020     Introduction The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted multiple responses to safeguard life, and the efforts of frontline workers across the globe are a reminder of the empathy and resilience of the human spirit. Throughout history, all societies have shown a capacity for a politics of care, and… | Read on »

The Work of Metaphor in the Coronavirus Pandemic

Published: 26 May 2020 by Irish Humanities Alliance On March 18th, as Covid-19 spread across the United States, Donald Trump declared himself a “wartime president”. Like many of his fellow leaders, he opted for metaphor amidst the crisis, enhancing his status while underscoring the severity of the situation. The pandemic has proved a fruitful ground… | Read on »

Where to for communication and journalism in the post-Coronavirus world?

An earlier version in Portuguese appeared in Público, 8 May 2020. Social relations did not come to an end with the confinement measures adopted to reduce exposure to Covid-19, even though many were suspended or restricted to the domestic sphere. In the same way, the process of communication did not stop; in many instances it… | Read on »

A Letter from the Emergency Room

Jac Saorsa, Discarded mask. Oil on paper, 2020 First posted in Synapsis, 15 May 2020 In early January, scientists identified SARS-CoV2 as the causative agent for a cluster of pneumonia cases in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. The first official death from Covid-19 (the infection caused by the novel coronavirus) was reported by China on January… | Read on »

Covid-19: Heading Home to Italy during the Crisis

“Self-portrait” in transit. Photo: Giada Lagana. In Italy, Covid-19 started earlier than anywhere else in Europe. Italians living abroad, and especially those living in the UK, lived it twice: alone, among the sick men of Europe. The UK did not pay enough attention to what was happening, commented Luigi Ippolito in the Corriere della Sera,… | Read on »

We need a hive mind, not a herd mentality.

These are strange times we are living through. At the beginning of the Covid crisis I was uplifted to listen to people singing from their balconies, but in recent days was disheartened to learn that the Italians in certain regions have stopped their arias and social unrest is starting to be felt. I learned that… | Read on »

A Quieter but Less Silent Spring? Bird song and COVID-19

It could seem crass to talk of happy coincidences in the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak but one fortunate aspect is that the epidemic arrived in northern Europe during springtime. While daily life has transformed and death has seemed close at hand, the vernal burgeoning of life has offered comfort to many. Lockdown’s disruption of the normally… | Read on »

Remembering the Sun of Joy

The travellers among us are on short rein this year. Even the most profound distortion of space-time cannot bring the Andes mountains within my personal 5 km radius, and the flat-topped Partry hills of Mayo, visible from our Moycullen garden, remain frustratingly out of reach. So I draw, the practice of art being well known… | Read on »