Coronavirus

  • “Story in the Public Square:” A Look Back at One Year in Virtual Production

    Above: Author and comedian Gina Brillon prepares to tape an episode of “Story in the Public Square” virtually with hosts Jim Ludes and G. Wayne Miller in November 2020. In early 2020, news of the coronavirus’ spread across the globe made headlines.  As the first cases emerged in Rhode Island, schools and offices closed; it became clear production of “Story in the Public Square” was no longer possible in the … Read More

  • The (Coming) Wave of Vaccine Disinformation

    Since the 1980s, 75 million people have been infected with the human immuno-deficiency virus, the virus that causes AIDS.  32 million people have died.  In 2009, about 1.4 billion people were infected by H1N1, the swine flu.  It killed 575,000 people, globally.  Ebola, in the 2014 outbreak, killed 11,310 people of the 28,616 it infected.  In every one of those cases, disinformation from Russia stoked anxieties, obscured the truth, and … Read More

  • Truth and Panic

    In May of 1940, the German Army nearly won the war in Europe.  After invading the low countries, their forces swung left and engaged a joint British and French army.  As German forces swept across Belgium, Belgian resistance collapsed and its king, Leopold, capitulated.  British and French forces were driven onto a sliver of beach in the small port city of Dunkirk.  On those sands, the remnants of the British ... Read More
  • Coronavirus: On the Front Lines with Daniela Lamas

    Two months ago, production of Story in the Public Square was stopped when our state governor issued a stay at home order.  Like most of the rest of the country, we’ve watched the days pass.  While we stayed home, Dr. Daniela Lamas kept going to work as a pulmonary specialist on the front lines of the pandemic.  Lamas is a pulmonary and critical-care doctor at Boston’s Brigham & Women’s Hospital … Read More

  • Globalization: Not Dead Yet

    Every fall I teach a course on the history of globalization.  It is the highlight of my year and it gives me a seemingly endless supply of grist for understanding.  So when I read an article from The Los Angeles Times that claimed the Coronavirus may threaten globalization, it set my wheels turning because it speaks to a popular misunderstanding of what globalization actually is. More than a century before … Read More

  • Russian Disinformation in the Age of Coronavirus

    Just because there’s a global pandemic doesn’t mean that the great game of international politics takes a break.  In fact, just like the rest of society, international powers are adapting to—and in some cases exploiting—the Coronavirus.  The two most aggressive players are Russia and China, and while they have different international objectives, they are both aggressively pursuing their goals.  In Russia’s case, the government of President Vladimir Putin continues to … Read More