ASA2020: How to Live Through a Pandemic
ASA2020. Online conference, 27 August 2020
Online conference, 27 August 2020
The Association of Social Anthropologists of the UK and Commonwealth’s 2020 conference will be a live ONLINE event on 27 August. The ASA conference hosted by University of St Andrews will now take place in 2021 - see the ASA2021 pages.
Responses to the Covid pandemic have been global, differentiated, and dramatic. The widespread and enduring calls for ’social distancing’ have profound implications for sociality, shifting the very basis of relations between humans, animals, and other life-forms and things. Anthropologists have written about epidemics from many perspectives, considering illness, health and death, state services, cosmopolitanism and xenophobia, social coercion, state powers, scientific processes and more. What does the concept of a ‘pandemic’ imply? What we have learned about previous declarations of pandemics or epidemics and how the effects are differently experienced? How are particular places and practices considered more sanitary than others, and what do the notions of ‘infection’ and ‘contagion’ carry with them? What does a pandemic do, and how do people live through and beyond them?
In addition, we ask what implications the experience of the current pandemic might have for our research and teaching methods. What aspects of the move online and the implementation of so-called ‘social distancing’ are particularly significant for anthropology, and what does anthropology have to offer in these circumstances?
This online plenary event will gather perspectives and theories from Social Anthropology broadly defined, and contributions will be considered for publication in the ASA edited monograph series.
The conference will be organised into 4 one-hour sessions, with three speakers in each session. The sessions will be at 9-10.15, 10.30-11.30, 1-2, 2.30-3.30 - British Summer Time (UTC=1). The event will take place in Zoom, but discussion will continue through online commenting on the panel page in the two weeks following the event.
Speakers have been invited to share a short draft paper (max 4000 words) with the other speakers on their panel by September 1st.
Registration for this one-day event will open shortly. The fees will be as follows:
- ASA members and those from Global South: free
- Student non-members: £10
- Other non-members: £20
Any queries, please email conference(at)theasa.org.