The Quarantine Chronicles 😷 Julian Gallo

Detail from Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s “The Triumph of Death”, 1562

A Daily Feature | سلسلة يومية

This is an extraordinary time, wrote Carol Sansour to, among many others, the American writer Julian Gallo, and I would like to document it by means of testimonies from you and others around the world.  I would appreciate it if you could answer those four questions in whichever form you see fit (preferably a short video):

What is the most pressing thought/idea you are having these days;

What are you hopeful for (personally and for the human race);

What scares you;

How are you spending your time (please indicate if you are on lockdown or not)?


1

The direction the world is heading. I’m particularly concerned with the right wing populist turn in America and across the world. You’re beginning to see the same things and hear the same rhetoric one heard in the 1920s and 1930s and it’s quite alarming. The rise in division: ethnic, religious, and so on. I fear we haven’t learned any lessons from history and as the saying goes, we are doomed to repeat them.

2

There are good people around and I think the more we focus on each other’s humanity and realize that we really aren’t so ‘different’ from one another, that we have the same hopes, fears, concerns, dreams, desires, that maybe — maybe — there’d be a little more empathy in the world. Right now there’s too much righteous anger but I think these are just the loudest voices in the room. There’s also a lot of good and it’s important we focus our attention on that and shut off all the noise. Personally, I just want to keep writing and hopefully connect with others with similar interests and ideas.

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The Quarantine Chronicles 😷 Joe Linker

Detail from Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s “The Triumph of Death”, 1562

A Daily Feature | سلسلة يومية

This is an extraordinary time, wrote Carol Sansour to, among many others, the American writer Joe Linker, and I would like to document it by means of testimonies from you and others around the world.  I would appreciate it if you could answer those four questions in whichever form you see fit (preferably a short video):

What is the most pressing thought/idea you are having these days;

What are you hopeful for (personally and for the human race);

What scares you;

How are you spending your time (please indicate if you are on lockdown or not)?


 

My response took the form of a folk song because the virus comes without boundaries,

and while Folk originates in a particular place and time, it travels, and becomes universal.

 

There are four simple verses to the song, each in answer to one of your questions:

 

“The Hotel Cairo Cosmopolitan Talking Blues”

 

Well, I don’t know what to think these days,

walking around in a purple haze,

 

praying for peace and happiness,

hoping the finish rubs off on me.

 

I’m not afraid of nothing, yet still I fear

children walking by dressed in tears.

 

I’m spending my time making up these rhymes,

homeword bound going round and round.

 

The Quarantine Chronicles 😷 Erik Noonan

Detail from Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s “The Triumph of Death”, 1562

A Daily Feature | سلسلة يومية

This is an extraordinary time, wrote Carol Sansour to, among many others, the American poet Erik Noonan, and I would like to document it by means of testimonies from you and others around the world.  I would appreciate it if you could answer those four questions in whichever form you see fit (preferably a short video):

What is the most pressing thought/idea you are having these days;

What are you hopeful for (personally and for the human race);

What scares you;

How are you spending your time (please indicate if you are on lockdown or not)?


The Quarantine Chronicles 😷 Luciana Erregue

Detail from Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s “The Triumph of Death”, 1562

A Daily Feature | سلسلة يومية

This is an extraordinary time, wrote Carol Sansour to, among many others, the Argentine curator Luciana Erregue, and I would like to document it by means of testimonies from you and others around the world.  I would appreciate it if you could answer those four questions in whichever form you see fit (preferably a short video):

What is the most pressing thought/idea you are having these days;

What are you hopeful for (personally and for the human race);

What scares you;

How are you spending your time (please indicate if you are on lockdown or not)?


The Quarantine Chronicles 😷 Nasser Rabbat

Detail from Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s “The Triumph of Death”, 1562

A Daily Feature | سلسلة يومية

This is an extraordinary time, wrote Carol Sansour to, among many others, the Syrian-American architecture scholar Nasser Rabbat, and I would like to document it by means of testimonies from you and others around the world.  I would appreciate it if you could answer those four questions in whichever form you see fit (preferably a short video):

What is the most pressing thought/idea you are having these days;

What are you hopeful for (personally and for the human race);

What scares you;

How are you spending your time (please indicate if you are on lockdown or not)?


1-Two ideas: safety of my loved ones and their future, and will I finish all the writing projects I have/or that I dream of doing.

2-Electing Bernie Sanders, which is unfortunately receding as a possibility more and more to the detriment of the US and the world.

3-Business as usual, the capitalist order withering this crisis, even getting stronger by it and the rest of us paying the heavy price of economic depression and the detritus of the pandemic.

4-Soft lockdown (going out for walks and shopping and visits to the office but no students meeting, classes, or visit, and of course no restaurants/bars/cafes). Writing and reading, but so far only writing what I need to write with looming deadlines and reading students papers. I read only one book since the soft lockdown: Iman Mersal في أثر عنايات الزيات. I liked it a lot and found in it wonderful insights about how we can reconstruct people’s lives in a culture that is not so good at recording and keeping archives, something I struggle with all the time. Soon I will get back to my book on al-Maqrizi, for which I dealt with the same problems. I have to finish it this year.

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