Allow these questions to guide you as you compose your argument: Please also provide a thesis question
- Is this a racialized crisis? Your essay needs to establish the real concrete terms of the crisis – in what specific ways does this crisis effect the lives of black people in the US? Are black people in general suffering disproportionately? Are specific black populations suffering at rate differently from that of other black populations? Be specific and use concrete examples. Don’t be afraid of contradictions or messiness in the data, rather allow that to further nuance your discussion. Rely on the cases and reporting that we have read together in class as well as your own research.
- Is this crisis part of a larger history of racialized public health crises? Situate this crisis within a history. Are there racial dimensions to this history? What do they look like? Utilize concrete examples from the readings or from your own research. Be attentive to both the historical continuities as well as the historically unique dimensions of this moment.
- Does this crisis have a spatial dimension? If so, what role does the racialized history of space play in this public health crisis? Is there a spatial dimension to this crisis? Is there a racial dimension to the built environment? Is there a relationship between the two? In concrete terms, what does that look like? Have historical spatial practices intensified the crisis?
- Does the “Black Radical Tradition” offer lessons from the past? Are there examples from history of community struggles shaped by the intersecting forces of racism and public health crises? What can we learn from them? What of value have they contributed? What limitations did they face?
- Conclusion: Imagining an antiracist future. If, as you have established, the COVID crisis has taken its particular shape within this society because of the specific history of racism within this society, a democratic response would necessitate an antiracist response. Draw from your reading of the black radical tradition, and contemporary social movements against racism, to conclude this essay with an argument for an antiracist response to the CIVID-19 crisis.