“Solidarity” Assignments and Readings Related to COVID-19
The following are suggested as Canvas writing or reflective prompts to support course outcomes related to social justice, civic responsibility, solidarity, and the “whole person.”
- Students are well aware of their own challenges related to this unprecedented health emergency, but assign them to research and reflect how this current state of emergency might be impacting the population the class was engaged with as part of its service or immersion. Results can be shared with partners via an online chat or Skype/Zoom meeting.
- Analyze the COVID-19 outbreak and public responses to it (including changes in university policy) through a lens that is attentive to underlying structures of power and inequality, i.e., how might this impact someone with a disability, financial constraints, family or other challenges.
- Create a public service announcement for your local community about Covid-19. Research the facts, learn your community audience, engage appropriate sources of information. Choose language and a platform appropriate to the community you were engaged to support awareness.
- Sadly, this public health emergency has brought out incidences of bias and discrimination including racist attacks against Asians. Have your students examine historical examples of crisis-related racism and discuss how service, engagement, and immersion can address discrimination against marginalized groups.
For more ideas, consult #coronavirussyllabus - a crowdsourced cross-disciplinary resource that includes syllabi specifically addressing the current health crisis, an extensive reading list of academic and other articles addressing past pandemic and global crises, and links to topical podcasts, films, and more.
Suggested Reading Assignments that animate social justice challenges related to the pandemic through the lens of social services, the prison system, poverty, and healthcare:
- The Coronavirus’s Impact on Homeless Services - The Atlantic
- Coronavirus Is the Perfect Disaster for ‘Disaster Capitalism’
- How we can minimize harm and save lives during a pandemic - Ohio Justice & Policy Center
- Detroit Activist, Philosopher Grace Lee Boggs: “The Only Way to Survive Is by Taking Care of One Another”
- DECOLONIZING COMMUNITY CARE IN RESPONSE TO COVID-19
“Double Jeopardy: The Coronavirus & Homelessness in Ohio” - documents critical infrastructure needs of Ohioans who are experiencing homelessness and are at risk of contracting COVID-19.
Initial Analysis of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) (S. 748) – National Council of NonProfits
Opinion | Who Will Win the Fight for a Post-Coronavirus America? - The New York Times
- Coronavirus is laying bare America's class divide - Baltimore Sun
Social Distancing Is a Privilege - New York Times
Virus lays bare the frailty of the social contract | Financial Times
Other Resources for Faculty that support existing civic and course outcomes tied to the pandemic in your community engaged course:
COVID-19 - Racial Equity & Social Justice Resources -includes a range of resources that look at how the pandemic may reshape the world, the existing disparities it highlights, and perspectives on the virus' impact on different communities and issue areas
- Teaching Social Action Online, produced in response to the health crisis by Harvard’s program on Public Narrative: Leadership, Storytelling, and Action.
- Teaching in Times of Crisis is an online guide prepared by Vanderbilt’s Center for Teaching, that offers insights into assigning relevant content, facilitating discussions, and staying attuned to student well being following traumatic events.
- Roadmap to Pandemic Resilience – Harvard Center for Ethics
- The Color of COVID - YouTube - Featuring Xavier Theology faculty member, Dr. Adam Clark, and panelists Rev. Damon Lynch, Iris Roley, and Rev. Nelson Pierce, this conversation addresses the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on the African American population and health care ethics in the prison system.