Mary Catherine, I like how you critiqued the obsession that everyone seems to have with COVID-19. Like you say, the theme of obsession with an outbreak and epidemic is especially mentioned in the Introduction section of Contagious. Reading that piece, I felt that it was very relevant to the current pandemic because of the panic brought on by the constant discussion of the virus. While I think it’s good for people to be concerned and adequately prepared, there is a point when too much discussion can cause panic.
I also enjoyed reading your analysis of “The Masque of the Red Death” and your comparison of the people staying in the abbey with those not taking the virus seriously during these times. I think the same people in the story can also be applied to those who only think about themselves and try to keep safe without any thought of others, pretending that people aren’t dying while they enjoy life hidden from the world.