The OU History Department’s Twitter challenged its followers to post memes surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic in hopes of building community among OU students.
The department’s “call for memes” is a parody of a “call for papers,” where academics submit a response to a particular question or theme. From March 28 on, this post has served as a place for students to share humorous content that is relevant to current news, said undergraduate advisor Sarah Olzawski in an email.
Along with the department’s past content, this post is meant to bring an irreverent, witty and relevant voice to the historical community, Olzawski said.
“OU’s History Department is particularly passionate about the digital humanities and using digital tools to make history accessible to the public,” Olzawski said. “This call for memes and our Twitter is one way we pursue that goal.”
Through the highs and lows that come with this pandemic, Olzawski said it is the perfect opportunity for history students, who are so well-versed in global events and patterns, to converse about their shared experiences.
“Students studying humanities often feel alone and invisible due to all of the focus on STEM,” Olzawski said. “Our History Department’s Twitter is one way to elevate their presence on campus, connecting them to each other and proactively asserting the value of studying humanities.”
Getting toilet paper in 2020 pic.twitter.com/l9XIDsgRs7— Charles Franczyk (@cpfran61) March 28, 2020
It can be easy for members of the OU community to become consumed by the chaos and experience stress and anxiety in isolation. Olzawski said she sees this call for memes as an opportunity to lighten the mood momentarily while respecting the uniqueness of the current circumstances.
“During these uncertain times, memes can unite people with laughter and shared recognition,” Olzawski said. “They provide us with comfort through the feeling of knowing none of us are alone in this crisis.”
To view this compilation of memes, visit the OU History Department’s Twitter. Content can be submitted by posting on Twitter and tagging @OUHistoryClub in the caption.