When the COVID-19 pandemic upended everyday life, information and analysis were at a premium. So Penn Arts & Sciences converted its long-running 60-Second Lectures Series into a virtual “In Quarantine” edition, with a wide variety of scholars and experts shedding light on the pandemic. More than 20 professors recorded lectures from their homes, touching on the science; the complex social, cultural, historical, and economic issues; and the response on campus. A set of lectures went live at noon each Wednesday in April.
Speakers included Sarah Barringer Gordon, Professor of History and Arlin M. Adams Professor of Constitutional Law, who discussed the history of epidemics and individual rights, and Jonathan Moreno, David and Lyn Silfen University Professor of Ethics, who explained how vaccine recipients would be prioritized. Dorothy Roberts, George A. Weiss University Professor of Law and Sociology, Raymond Pace and Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander Professor of Civil Rights, and Professor of Africana Studies, spoke about racial mythology in medicine. David Wallace, Judith Rodin Professor of English, reflected on the “greatest pandemic” in 1348.
“In this spring’s 60-Second Lectures, we looked to the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences for perspectives on meaning in times of illness and death, perspectives on human societies in times of crisis, and reliable knowledge and control of threats from the natural world,” says Paul Sniegowski, Stephen A. Levin Family Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, who introduced the lectures. “They are dedicated to understanding and hope in an extraordinarily difficult time.”
Watch some highlights from the series below, or to see all the 60-Second Lectures in Quarantine, click here.
Jonathan Morneo, David and Lyn Silfen University Professor of History and Sociology of Science and of Medical Ethics and Health Policy
Prioritizing Vaccine Recipients
Dorothy Roberts, George A. Weiss University Professor of Law and Sociology, Raymond Pace and Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander Professor of Civil Rights, and Professor of Africana Studies
How Racial Mythology in Medicine Hides Racism in the Pandemic
Martin Seligman, Zellerbach Family Professor of Psychology and Director of the Penn Positive Psychology Center
Positive Psychology in the Pandemic
Sarah Barringer Gordon, Arlin M. Adams Professor of Constitutional Law and Professor of History
Legal History of Epidemics in Modern America
David Wallace, Judith Rodin Professor of English
Surviving the Greatest Pandemic: 1348
Sarah Tiskhoff, David and Lyn Silfen University Professor of Genetics and Biology
Genetic Risk Factors for Susceptibility to COVID-19 in Global Populations