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Faculty Initiatives Responsive to COVID-19

This page explores some of the many ways members of the Humanities Center and CSSH community are engaging with broader audiences in the face of the global COVID-19 pandemic. If you are a member of CSSH, please submit news items you would like to see featured on the CSSH website.

CSSH Pandemic Teaching Initiative

A library of publicly accessible educational modules that explore the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic is causing unprecedented disruption to our lives and social systems. But it also provides a lens through which we can deepen the understanding of ourselves and our world and an opportunity to reimagine how our society could be. The modules, which contain the equivalent of a week’s content for an academic course, explore topics related to the pandemic in fields ranging from economics and political science to literature and philosophy.

All CSSH Pandemic Teaching Initiative modules are freely available on the website and in Canvas.

The Pandemic Teaching Initiative is supported by the College of Social Sciences and Humanities, the Humanities Center, the NULab for Texts, Maps, and Networks, the Ethics Institute, and The School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs at Northeastern University

Humanities COVID-19 Syllabus

To help us think and teach about contagion, global health, and community in a time of social distancing and fear, this syllabus-in-progress compiled by Professor Sari Altschuler and Professor Elizabeth Maddock Dillon focuses on literary, historical, philosophical, religious and cultural aspects of the current health crisis and its history.

The first iteration of a crowd-sourced Humanities COVID-19 Syllabus, available here.

A Journal of the Plague Year: An Archive of COVID-19 #COVID19Archive

Associate Professor of History, Victoria Cain recently helped create A Journal of the Plague Year: An Archive of COVID19 ( a new digital repository to crowdsource images, oral histories, videos and stories about the global experience of COVID-19 in order to create a lasting historical record of this extraordinary moment. Contribute today to create a lasting historical record!

CSSH COVID-19 Research and Engagement Development Initiative

As the global COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, we call upon the diverse expertise of our colleagues within CSSH to develop related research and engagement projects. The current epidemic and associated cautionary measures around the globe have brought to the fore many challenges that demand attention and will require innovative solutions. We encourage projects that will help us to better understand the pandemic and its many social, economic, ethical and political impacts.

In collaboration with the home unit(s) of the faculty member(s), the CSSH Dean’s Office will award small pilot grants in an expedited fashion, to support COVID-19 related research from humanities, social science, or policy perspectives. Inter-disciplinary collaboration is encouraged, and faculty members may apply as a sole investigators or as a team. Please pay attention to current university guidelines for research continuity and COVID-19 that limit in-person data collection to be sure that proposed projects can begin immediately.

Proposals will be reviewed on a rolling basis with funding decisions made within a week of proposal submission in order to promote efficient development of research. Proposals for this round will be accepted through June 1, 2020. Additional information can be found here.

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