Roberts, Jennifer, "Multimodal Reflections V - Jennifer Roberts - Week 10" (2020). COVID-19 Reflections: A Multimodal Oral History Project (ANTH 449). Paper 18.
For this semester’s project, I decided to create a photographic essay and a series of autoethnographic interview reflections regarding COVID-19, focusing on how this pandemic has affected me personally. The photographic essay documented the current community impacts due to COVID-19. These images were mostly taken while I was out running grocery errands and include photographs of overflowing trash bins at schools and empty parking lots, playgrounds, and closed businesses. I chose to take photographs of school trash because it was thought-provoking to me to see that the public was throwing away all types of waste! It seemed to me that schools had thrown away items regardless of whether they were in good condition or not. Trash was piled inside and outside of the trash bins, and it was around for days at a time, potentially posing a health hazard.
I am a WKU student, but decided to go home to Missouri after the University closed campus. My family and I live near the boundary of two adjoining counties, and I noticed there was a large dichotomy between the two. St. Louis County closed most non-essential businesses, yet St. Charles County allowed businesses to decide for themselves if they were essential and whether to stay open. The other photographs I captured from running errands were in the community or documenting people in parks. Those images were important to me because they show the large number of vacant businesses near my home, and focused on how people were handling the governor's rule of ‘social distancing’ and the ‘shut down’ of businesses that were considered “non-essential.” There are so many small businesses near my home and many of them are shutting going out of business.