69th Annual Utah State Historical Society Conference
PUBLIC HEALTH & THE COMMON GOOD
This year Utah and the world have been gripped by a deadly pandemic. By the end of 2020, some 1,788,000 people worldwide have died from COVID-19. This is a sobering number that alone does not explain the toll of the pandemic on individuals, families, and communities. In recognition of the trauma and disruption of the past year, the 2021 conference will focus on public health. Beyond medicine and health outcomes, this theme also raises questions and assumptions about our medical, psychological, and religious understanding of bodily wellness; health-related policies and practices; racial, gender, and class inequalities; our democratic and political systems; and impacts on social cohesion.
Integral to public health is the notion of the common good, a concept with deep philosophical and religious roots that seems to have less currency today. The common good is often dismissed or considered antithetical to a society organized around the individual. Yet in the age of COVID-19, as personal resistance to state mask mandates and debates over who should get vaccinated first reveal, the relationship of the individual to the body politic (and vice versa) seems to be a renewed conversation in the making.
The conference promises to present other interpretations of public health and the common good , as they pertain to Utah history, to encourage a broad understanding of the topic.
The conference is attended by scholars, students, policymakers, organizations, and members of the general public. We feature a range of formats, from the traditional panels and sessions to more innovative formats.
DUE TO THE ONGOING PANDEMIC, THIS YEAR'S CONFERENCE WILL BE VIRTUAL
Nominations are now being accepted!
Helen Z. Papanikolas Award for
2021 - Best Student Paper on Utah Women’s History
Utah State History sponsors the Papanikolas Award to encourage new scholarly research in the area of Utah women’s history at colleges and universities. The award is named for Helen Z. Papanikolas (1917-2004), a former member of the Utah State Board of History who was most noted for her research and writing on Utah and ethnic history, but also wrote fiction, as well as women’s history.
For additional information, please email Alycia Rowley at firstname.lastname@example.org.