Elective Affinities | Perspectives for the Pandemic

Recommendations for illuminating works from beyond our academic community
 

Dancer, in Call to Unite performance

ELECTIVE AFFINITIES | PERFORMANCE

A Call To Unite, by the Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation
 

The finalé of Ailey's "Revelations" ballet transformed for the pandemic era; performed and published by the Alvin Alley Dance Foundation

HUMOR AND HEALTH

Why we need humor at a time like this
 

At Oxford University Press blog, William Costanzo explores the social and medicinal aspects of humor.

ELECTIVE AFFINITIES | MUSIC

"Ode to Joy" online
 

Beethoven’s "Ode to Joy" performed by members of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra while keeping #StayAtHome protocols. 

Portrait of Albert Camus

ELECTIVE AFFINITIES | LITERATURE

Camus on the Coronavirus
 

Writing in The New York Times, philosopher Alain de Botton says that Camus "reminds us that suffering is random, and that is the kindest thing one can say about it."

photo of choir members on Zoom grid

THE ARTS

"The Longest Time" (quarantine edition)
 

Members of Canadian choirs perform a new version of Billy Joel's "The Longest Time."

Illustration of the Inferno

ELECTIVE AFFINITIES | POETRY

Reading of Dante's Inferno
 

Annual reading at the Poet's Corner, St. John the Divine Cathedral, New York City

flu pandemic

ELECTIVE AFFINITIES | LITERATURE

How pandemics seep into literature
 

Commentary by Elizabeth Outka in The Paris Review: "Covid-19 promises to alter us all in strange ways. It’s a paradigm-shifting event that divides lives and cultures into a before and after. We will emerge changed, though how those changes will manifest is far from certain." 

wearing a face mask while voting

ELECTIVE AFFINITIES | ELECTION 2020

How to hold elections during a pandemic
 

Recommended by the MIT Election Lab: In the National Review, Joshua Kleinfeld writes that, "The United States is the beacon of democracy around the world. Let’s show the world that no pandemic can stop our elections."

detail from xkcg comic

ELECTIVE AFFINITIES | XKCD

Pathogen Resistance
 

A web comic from xkcd, by Randall Munroe

Crabapple Buds in Spring

ELECTIVE AFFINITIES | DAILY LIFE

Old treatments for a novel coronavirus
 

"Of course we want every discovery modern medicine can provide. But to survive this period with our sanity intact, we also need to access timeless aspects of our lives." — Renée Loth in The Boston Globe