The Department of English, Jamia Millia Islamia(JMI) organized the third lecture of the Distinguished Lecture Series, “The Covid Pandemic: A Perfect Storm of Capitalist Irrationality and Injustice” by Prof. Nancy Fraser, Henry A. and Louise Loeb Professor at the New School for Social Research, on Friday, 23 rd July, 2021, at 8:00 PM IST on Zoom. Supported by the Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC), Ministry of Education, Government of India, the talk was organized as part of the ongoing academic collaboration with the Department of English and American Studies, University of Würzburg, Germany, and promises to be one in a line of successively pertinent lectures.
The talk was conducted by Ms. Shraddha A. Singh and Ms. Zahra Rizvi, Ph.D. scholars in the Department of English, JMI, and was enthusiastically attended by a large number of scholars, students, and faculty from all over the world and across various time-zones.Prof. Simi Malhotra, H.o.D., Department of English, JMI, Indian PI, delivered the welcome address, greeting the invited speaker, faculty, scholars, and students. She spoke about the talk as a part of the ongoing collaborative project between the Department of English, JMI and the Department of English and American Studies, University of Wuerzburg, on “New Terrains of Consciousness: Globalization, Sensory Environments and Local Cultures of Knowledge”, supported by the Ministry of Education’s initiative SPARC, “Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration” which aims to facilitate academic and research collaboration between higher education institutes in India and abroad.
She, then, introduced the esteemed speaker, Prof. Nancy Fraser, who was greeted by a round of applause.Through her lecture, Prof. Nancy Fraser drew attention to the capitalist social system that has precipitated the global pandemic. She critiqued capitalist irrationality which depletes everything in its path without any intention of replenishing that which it has expended. Her talk underlined how it is important to think of capitalism as a larger institutionalized social order, and not just an economic system.
She stressed that various forms of exploitation are an intrinsic part of this unjust order which repeatedly produces crisis. In conclusion, she cautioned that the pandemic is not the last byproduct of an excessive social system such as capitalism.This was followed by an engaging, in-depth Q/A session coordinated by Ms. SakshiDogra, a Ph.D. Scholar in the Department of English, JMI. The event was brought to an end with a Vote of Thanks by Ms. Shraddha A. Singh.To ensure a wide range of viewership and participation, the event was also live streamed on YouTube, and was attended by over a hundred participants.