Private Struggles in Public Spaces
Documenting COVID-19 Material Culture and Landscapes
Keywords:archaeology, anthropology, COVID-19, ethics, heritage, landscape, materiality, private, public art
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted nearly every facet of our world, including some of the most fundamental forms of human behavior and our conception of the social. Everyday activities now pose a risk to individuals and to society as a whole. This radical shift in how we live has produced a wide array of material responses across the globe. This photo essay seeks to open up dialogue and ask questions about the numerous forms of COVID-19 materiality and altered landscapes that the authors have chronicled, witnessed, documented and cataloged in their communities, using archaeological and ethnographic methods. This materiality includes chalk art, graffiti, painted rocks and signage placed in both public and private spaces within the project authors’ communities. In framing our questions, we draw upon theoretical frameworks in the fields of cultural trauma studies, cultural anthropology and contemporary archaeology.
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