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Convened by the Institute of Modern Languages Research, School of Advanced Study
Charles Burdett, Director; Joseph Ford, Lecturer in French; and Godela Weiss-Sussex, Reader in Modern German Literature


During a ‘global’ pandemic, the capacity to learn from the experience of others and share knowledge across borders is essential. Responses to Covid-19 have varied markedly across the globe. The differences in the approaches taken are due to systemic political and economic conditions, but also to cultural and historical factors. One lesson that has emerged clearly is that only a joint transnational effort will enable us to respond efficiently and decisively to the threat of an illness that knows no borders. In this panel discussion, Humanities scholars of languages and cultures will reflect on the handling of the pandemic in their cultural/geographic area of expertise – and suggest lessons to be learned from other nations. They will then go on to explore the place of creative and cultural production in building a more transnationally interlinked post-Covid world – as well as the contributions to be made by research in the Humanities, and specifically Modern Languages.

View here pre-recorded videos by the panel members

Charles Burdett / Godela Weiss-Sussex (IMLR), Chairs

Astrid Erll (Frankfurt)
Charles Forsdick (Liverpool)
Ignacio Peyró (Director Instituto Cervantes London and UK Coordinator. Author)
Alejandro Arenas-Pinto (UCL)
Nelson Mlambo (University of Namibia)
Leon Rocha (Lincoln)

Respondent: Steven Wilson (Queens University Belfast)

This event is the first of two events convened by the IMLR as part of the School of Advanced Study's 'Open for Discussion' series. Both events draw on the policy recommendations developed as part of the past four years’ research in the context of the AHRC’s Open World Research Initiative (OWRI).

'Languages and the Pandemic: Public Health Engagement with Multilingual Communities in the UK' is the second event in this series and will be held on Tuesday, 27 April at 6pm BST

All are welcome to attend this free event, starting at 6pm BST. The joining link for the online event will be sent out to all those registered prior to the event