The “Chinese Virus”: A History of Epidemics, Violence, and Anti-Asian Racism

Thursday, Sep 10, 2020 | 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm


The coronavirus pandemic has been accompanied by an epidemic of anti-Asian violence, fueled by a president who has labelled COVID-19 “kung flu” and “the Chinese virus.”  This panel will feature Beth Lew-Williams, Associate Professor of History at Princeton University and the author of The Chinese Must Go: Violence, Exclusion and the Making of the Alien in America (Harvard University Press, 2018), and Nayan Shah, Professor of American Studies, Ethnicity and History at USC and the author of Contagious Divides: Race and Epidemics in San Francisco’s Chinatown (University of California Press, 2001), who will address how history helps us better comprehend our xenophobic present.

Co-sponsored by the Center for Chinese Studies, Berkeley Interdisciplinary Migration Initiative, and Asian American and Asian Diaspora Studies.


Miss the event?  Watch the recording below.

Thursday Forum Series

Faculty and graduate students are welcome to submit proposals to present at the CRG Thursday Forum Series. Proposals to present as an individual or a panel are invited each semester.

about proposal deadlines, download proposal forms, and check out the latest upcoming forums.