Young Essex adults are asked to share their boredom Covid-19 pandemic experiences

Dr Tina Kendall of Anglia Ruskin University. Picture: ARU

Dr Tina Kendall of Anglia Ruskin University. Picture: ARU - Credit: ARU

A project is looking for 15 to 24-year-olds in Essex to share their experiences of boredom during the Covid-19 pandemic through poetry, photography, paintings, short stories, doodles - or anything that can be put on to paper.

The Boredom Project is a collaboration between Anglia Ruskin University, Chelmsford Museum’s Chelmsford Creatives network, and the British Science Association.

This part of the project is working in collaboration with zine artist Lu. Submitted works will be included in a published zine which will be available for free, in print and online.

Dr Tina Kendall, Principal Lecturer in Film and Media at ARU, specialises in studying boredom across social media, TV and streaming services.

Dr Kendall said: “In the context of the pandemic, boredom quickly emerged as an issue. Many worried about the mental health implications of having so much unstructured time at home, and health and social organisations started providing guidance to help people cope with boredom during lockdown.

“At the same time, new boredom-themed hashtags such as #boredinthehouse, #boredinlockdown, and #boredvibeschallenge began to trend, as people began to create posts responding to their experiences of lockdown.

“For some, boredom has been one of the most difficult parts of lockdown but for others, the experience of boredom in lockdown has brought benefits, prompting them to change their habits or giving them more time for creativity or self-reflection.

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“We have also discussed how, in the context of the lockdown, boredom is a privilege that frontline and other essential workers have not necessarily had. Overall, we’ve been trying to think about how all of these experiences reflect the full complexity of boredom.”

The Boredom Project came about because of lockdown.

The British Science Association initially linked up with Chelmsford Creatives to plan a series of events around the British Science Festival, which was due to be hosted by ARU in Chelmsford next month. With the British Science Festival now postponed until September 2021 because of Covid-19, they started discussing other ideas. This led to The Boredom Project, which began as a series of online workshops.

Email submissions on the theme of boredom to by Monday, August 10, including your name, age and town.