Aro Velmet

is an assistant professor of history at the University of Southern California and the author of Pasteur’s Empire (Oxford University Press, 2020). He is also an editor of Eurozine’ Estonian partner journal Vikerkaar.

Articles

Cover for: Renaming is about respect

Renaming is about respect

Museums on race

Addressing discrimination towards black people is a collective responsibility. Racism, evident in visual memory and disguised through political association, reaches beyond countries with direct colonialist pasts. Taking Estonia as a case study, historians and curators discuss how to ‘render race’ in museums and public discourse.

Cover for: Promise and peril

Promise and peril

Mass vaccination in colonial Africa

While much of the current day anti-vaxx sentiment is rooted in conspiracy theories, some fears have real historical experiences underlying, which must be reckoned with. Aro Velmet looks into how a yellow fever vaccine, rolled out in French West Africa during World War II, may have killed thousands over more than four decades.

Cover for: Room temperature

Housing is part of the foundation upon which all other human social relations are built. Like sustenance and sex, society can’t be reproduced without shelter. Vikerkaar editor Aro Velmet announces the new Eurozine focal point ‘Room temperature: Housing in crisis’.

Cover for: The secret history of radiation

The secret history of radiation

An interview with Kate Brown

In the aftermath of the Chernobyl accident, international agencies dismissed local doctors’ warnings about a ‘public health catastrophe’ in order to suppress scandal over nuclear tests carried out by the West since the 1950s. Kate Brown talks to Aro Velmet about the secret history of radiation and what Chernobyl means in the era of climate change.

Cover for: An ominous sign

An ominous sign

UK, Estonia and Latvia after the EP election

What next for Britain and the EU? Though the Brexit Party will now be one of the largest national parties in the European Parliament, combined support for the ‘hard Remain’ parties is greater still. The EP election played out as a referendum on Estonia’s government too, while Latvia was spared a populist surge.

Cover for: Anarchism, work and bureaucracy

Anarchism, work and bureaucracy

An interview with David Graeber

‘On a deep, cultural level, people actually believe that if you don’t do something that at least mildly frustrates you, then your work is not valuable.’ Anthropologist, activist and bestselling anarchist David Graeber on the police state, bullshit jobs and why people need no telling that capitalism is bad.

French Protesters with banner for same-sex marriage

Universalist politics and its crises

A conversation with Camille Robcis

Human emancipation was always a more complex issue than it might at first seem, and never more so than in today’s France. Historian Camille Robcis discusses the evolution of French Republicanism since the 1980s in relation to controversies over same-sex marriage, integration and racism.

Read in Journals