The 2020 Visions: Imagining (Post-) COVID Worlds series reflects on the uneven impacts of the “pandemic year” and considers new futures that might be made possible in its wake.

Series editors: Weishun Lu, Juniper Lewis, Richelle Wilson, and Addie Hopes.

A blue paper masks sits in the grass

Thinking Beyond the “Wild” Pandemic

Alice Rudge examines how the language of "nature" has amplified xenophobia and reinforced colonial moral hierarchies during the COVID-19 pandemic.
a crowd of people wearing mask on platform at a train station

The COVID-19 Pandemic and the National Borders of the Imagination

The COVID-19 pandemic is an international event, but we still think of it in national terms. Juan Meneses outlines the limits of pandemic nationalism and imagines a way forward.
Green and purple ink swirls in water

Be Like Water, An Abolitionist Relationality

What does abolition mean for the everyday ways we relate to ourselves, to other humans, to the land, and to the more-than-human world? In this poetic essay, Ki'Amber Thompson wonders how water—and the call to "be like water"—might change the way we think and talk about abolition.
windows on a red brick wall

What 19th-Century Domestic Manuals Say about Housing as Infrastructure

Leah Marie Becker looks into the ways nineteenth-century domestic manuals portray homes as public infrastructure. This expansive and inclusive notion of infrastructure can inform how we approach environmental health in and after the COVID-19 pandemic.
Three smokestacks with black smoke, mountains in the background. Video game still.

Finding Connection and Resisting Extraction in Quarantine Gaming

During the COVID-19 pandemic, video games offered Nat Mesnard and many others an escape from isolation. But the false promise of endless productivity in factory building games like Satisfactory ensnared them in a myth of capitalist "progress."
Green and purple ink swirls in water

Be Like Water, An Abolitionist Relationality (Part II)

What does abolition look like? Ki’Amber Thompson discusses the need for more abolition visuals and how the Charles Roundtree Bloom Project brings outdoor healing justice to youth impacted by incarceration.
Clouds over frozen lake

Attuning the Senses

In this multimedia meditation, Petra Rethmann describes how the practice of sensorial attunement (or attention to the world around her) brought healing and clarity to her pandemic isolation.
Hand holds gold colored root

A Black Herbalist’s Guide to Breathing and Grieving with Yellow Dock

Herbalist Asia Dorsey reflects on a pandemic year when life and death cycles were especially present and describes Yellow Dock's role as the grief worker of the plant world.
Graffiti covering a tall monument with man on horse

How Protest Artists Transformed Whitewashed History

In her poem and photo exhibit, Les James reflects on how protest artists transformed the Robert E. Lee monument in Richmond, Virginia and spoke back to history.
Collage of four photos: spider; lead pipe; laptop screen; orange lichen on tree

Zoom Somatics in Four Poems

Inspired by shared Zoom somatics and careful attention to spiders and lichen, Petra Kuppers offers a collection of four poems about the experience of being with others online amid isolation.
cots in an empty room

Surviving the Pandemic in Prison

Prisoner and abolitionist Lawrence Jenkins describes the struggles of being incarcerated during COVID-19 and the heightened risk, fear, and racial violence of life on the inside.
A sign saying "Solidarity Against AAPI Hate" in front of the National Mall

How to Frame Asian Suffering in an Anti-Black World: A Conversation with Claire Jean Kim

Political science scholar Claire Jean Kim outlines how COVID-19 came to be racialized and discusses the implications of foregrounding anti-Asian harassment and violence in an anti-Black society.

Featured image: Inspired by balcony concerts that offered solidarity, generosity, and creativity between people even with social distancing. Image by Catherine Cordasco, 2020, submitted for United Nations Global Call Out To Creatives – help stop the spread of COVID-19.