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By Karen Nikos-Rose on July 7, 2020

Larry Bogad, UC Davis professor of Theatre and Dance, is also a performance artist and activist. His most recent activist work comes in the form of an educational podcast called “The Plague.” In his words, the podcast looks at “...not just at the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but at the societal plagues, the plagues created by human socio-economic systems, that make this coronavirus plague more virulent and dangerous.” Every episode focuses on a societal ill and its intersection with the coronavirus pandemic. Each episode also hosts a guest expert. 

The first episode focuses on “the plague of rainforest destruction” and hosts guest expert Jeff Conant. Over the course of the 65-minute episode, Bogad and Conant discuss the roles that deforestation and lack of biodiversity play in the spread of infectious diseases. 

Later episodes discuss other societal “plagues” ranging from the plague of racism to the plague of worker expendability. But the podcast goes beyond mere discussion. A key part of the podcast is offering “cures” or “treatments,” that is, ways for us to begin to address these societal plagues. 

Says Bogad: “We then move on to discuss ‘treatments’ or even ‘cures’ for that plague: what kinds of political or cultural action we can take to ‘cure’ it. Since many of our guest experts are also artists, they are invited to share a creative work on the topic — a song, poem, monologue— of their own creation or choosing.”

Read more here 

Listen to them all below.