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Essay final rough draft #2

Updates: Tentatively, our title is "Strategies for Maintaining Physiological and Mental Health during COVID-19," which will be divided into two central parts: (1) strategies from a physiological perspective, and (2) strategies from a mental health and awareness perspective.

Essay final rough draft

After discussing with the Xenophobia group, we decided to diverge into other groups. I recently joined the Health group and was intrigued by the discussions of perceptions of disease that seemed to tie closely with my topic as well. I hope to further expand on "rewiring" our current perceptions of disease through the use of histology as an artistic medium.

Introduction:

Perceptions of the Visible and Invisible World

The concepts of perception and imagery eloquently expressed by Dr. Siddharth Ramakrishnan seem to be entrenched in many of my previous blogs, which generally centered on our interactions with the visible and invisible world. While some of my latter posts focused on our understanding of a microbiological world, earlier blogs fixated on our perceptions of the environment.

Neuropsychiatric Effects of Hypoxia

Amidst trepidations in venturing into a synthetic “biodome,” a group of pioneers, known as the Synergists, isolated themselves from the rest of the world for two years in “Spaceship Earth” (Tangcay, 2020). With the romantic idealization of a self-sufficient community followed a flurry of media criticisms on the scientific aspect of the project.

Midterm Proposal: Microscopic Patterns in Art

We’ll believe it when we see it. Before Anton van Leeuwenhoek’s famous use of compound microscopes to look at tiny structures, very little was known about the invisible pathogens that may potentially cause disease. Thus, technological advances in microscopy have facilitated a better understanding of research in identifying pathologies from a microbial context.

Week 4 Notes: HOX Project + Midterm

Discussion

Tiger balm – Chinese medicine remedy used since ancient times, in comparison to allopathic medicine

  • Traditional Chinese medicine has been suggested to be successful in treating epidemic cases before (citing SARS 2003) but there is controversy as to whether traditional Chinese medicine is actually working

Whiskers – There are more tigers in “tiger farms” than in the wilderness

Myths surrounding COVID-19: Transmission and Treatment

Homeobox (Hox) genes dictate pattern formation during embryonic development and are found in most bilateral organisms. The “Hox Zodiac” project by Victoria Vesna and Siddharth Ramakrishnan examines the intrinsic relationship between Homo sapiens and animals through the shared principle of these well-conserved genes, featuring a dinner that promotes discussion among artists and scientists.

Week 3 Notes: Food and Genetic Engineering

DISCUSSION

ARTISCI – Particles project: series of interviews with artists influenced by COVID-19, subscribe to newsletter

Rice Production Cycle – Life Cycle Assessments for rice; discussion on food waste from COVID-19 hoarding and alternative solutions for rotting food

Food Waste Solutions – Eco materialistic and biomimicry views to resolve food waste problems due to hoarding; bread recycling by feeding microorganisms (i.e.: yeast which is used to make bread) and maintaining cycle 

Putting in Blood, Sweat and Tears for our Daily Bread

Haytham Nawar applies a multi-perspective lens to his interactive art project “Collective Bread Diaries,” in which participants may reflect a part of their identity through their unique interpretations of the staple. The participants’ representations are reproduced objectively through an MTurk technology/artificial intelligence program, thus preserving the participants’ thoughts when creating their individual bread diaries (Nawar).

Week 2 Notes: Emergence and Bread

Emergence

(These were my summary notes for today's lecture)

Xenophobia in the COVID-19 era:

While targeting a single group for a worldwide pandemic acts to isolate, a perspective receptive of various cultures may promote unity among different affected countries.

Racial categorization of COVID-19 to a single group may act as an “enabler” for xenophobia and violence toward a specific group. Racial discrimination may unjustly affect small businesses and social unity during these difficult times. 

Overpopulation and COVID-19: 7 billion people, 6 ft apart

​A typical day at the market may have involved some finagling through long lines, bumping into fellow shoppers while searching through your shopping list, and sneezing or coughing once in a while without a mask. The etiquette for shopping has drastically changed with growing concerns regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. “Social distancing” has emerged as a preventive strategy to limit the number of cases, rigorously followed both by stores and its customers.

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