Pandemic Politics: Contested Expertise and Activist Perspectives

März 18, 2021


00:00 Introduction

02:49 Between denial of facts and naive assertions of scientific neutrality

09:09 Is there a democracy based on facts?

14:47 Lessons from the AIDS/HIV activism

22:25 A new alliance of activists and scientists

26:05 Black Lives Matter and Public Health

29:18 How would a New Deal for Public Health look like?

33:57 A welfare state beyond technocracy

39:01 The need for global access to vaccines


Pandemic Politics – Contested Expertise and Activist Perspectives

with Gregg Gonsalves, Rahel Jaeggi and Robin Celikates


In this roundtable, Gregg Gonsalves discusses with Rahel Jaeggi and Robin Celikates how to fight the denial of truth by right-wing movements and authoritarian governments without falling for the naïve belief in the objectivity of value free science. Drawing from his rich experience as an AIDS/HIV activist, Gregg Gonsalves describes the vital role of social and political movements such as Black Lives Matter, both for establishing a democratic system of public health beyond technocracy and for the global distribution of vaccines needed to end the pandemic. As Rahel Jaeggi sums up at one point, the position of Gregg Gonsalves is best described as: “The medical is the political.”

Gregg Gonsalves has been an AIDS activist for over 30 years. He is a global health activist and assistant professor at Yale School of Public Health.