November 25, 2020

Covid-19 and other epidemics form the backbone of the XX of the Contemporary Political History Course



The León y Castillo House-Museum of Telde celebrates on November 11, 12 and 13 the 20th edition of the Course in Contemporary Political History, which this year dedicates to society and to epidemics in recent history. The presentations of these days, directed by the professor of Contemporary History José Miguel Pérez, will address the different aspects surrounding the epidemic, both from the health point of view and in its multiple consequences in a given context in time and today.

The aforementioned activity, organized by the museum dependent on the Council of Culture of the Cabildo Gran Canaria in collaboration with the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, will take place in person in afternoon sessions, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

The choice of this year’s program has been linked to an issue that concerns the entire population without exception, inviting to reflect on the successes and errors of societies to face epidemics and their consequences. From an interdisciplinary approach and from a historical dimension, the different speakers will reflect in this course on the influences of a virus, such as the one at hand, on demographic parameters, migratory processes, globalization or the scope and impact on the economy.

The course director, Professor José Miguel Pérez, will open the conference on November 11, with his conference ‘Epidemics and History’, in which he will address “The implications both from the health point of view and from the organization of states to combat pandemics and their effects on the economy, on demographic variations or from the perspective of globalization.”

This last issue will be addressed by the professor of Human Geography at the ULPGC, Josefina Domínguez Mújica, with her conference entitled ‘Mobility in times of pandemic: the alteration of the patterns of globalization’. In the current context in which globalization has brought a virus to every corner of the planet in 24 hours, the also president of the Global Change and Human Mobility Commission of the International Geographical Union will raise the following questions, among others: “Could it be said that mobility becomes local and that international relations will be dominated by the use of information and communication technologies? What will happen to tourism?

The 20th edition of the course will also feature the interventions of prominent international specialists who carry out their work from the Canary Islands such as Antonio Macías Hernández, professor of Economic History at the University of La Laguna; and Beatriz González Valcárcel, Professor of Applied Economics at the ULPGC. The first will propose on November 12, a historical review of the demographic variables in the Archipelago that mark the island’s trajectory due to the appearance of epidemics, such as that of cholera that, in 1851, decimated the population of Gran Canaria. The second, on November 13, as an international expert in Health Economics, will analyze all the dimensions surrounding the current epidemic.

PROGRAM

Wednesday, November 11

18:00 hours. Conference: Introduction and presentation. Epidemics and History. Dr. José Miguel Pérez García, Professor of Contemporary History at the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

The director of the conference will emphasize the new aspects that the epidemic has encountered in the current historical context. At the time of globalization, which for the first time changes the space-time limits of communication, Covid-19 breaks out and in a matter of 24 hours it spreads the disease throughout the world, at the same time that it also enables its solutions.

19:00 hours. Conference: Mobility in times of pandemic: Altering the patterns of globalization ”. Dra. Dª Josefina Domínguez Mújica, Professor of Human Geography at the ULPGC

The irruption of the pandemic profoundly weakens the foundations of an economy and society in which mobility is the nexus between spaces and societies. It could be said that immobility gains importance and flows remain on hold: air traffic decreases to levels of eighty and ninety percent and myriads of international migrants, students, visitors and tourists see their mobility projects limited.

In this context, it is worth asking whether the flows will again preside over human relations or, on the contrary, will the level of connectivity and contact between societies decrease.

Thursday, November 12

18:00 hours. Conference: The mortality crisis in the modern history of the Canary Islands. Dr. Antonio Macías Hernández, Professor of Economic History at the University of La Laguna

Variations in the growth or decrease of populations, especially in the Canarian case, will be the theme addressed by Dr. Antonio Macías in his lecture. Likewise, it will explain the enormous entanglements that politics had with the irruption of cholera in Gran Canaria in 1851.

Friday, November 13

19:00 hours. Conference: Covid-19: Between health and the economy. Dr. Beatriz González López Valcárcel, Professor of Applied Economics at the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

The international expert in Health Economics will discuss the economic and health aspects of the current pandemic in her conference. The professor in Applied Economics is committed to the integration of mathematical models of Covid-19 and economic models for the management of the epidemic. It is important to learn from past mistakes and reinforce what works.

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