June 15, 2016

The Tri-Co Digital Humanities Newsletter 1.8 (summer edition): talks, workshops, courses, tools, projects, CFPs, and more

The Tri-Co Digital Humanities Newsletter

vol 1 no 8.  June 14 2016. summer edition.

suitable for reading at the beach, behind the counter, by the pool, in the break room, at the library, on the way to the lab (but not while driving), in the field, atop a mountain, or under your desk.


In this issue: feminist data, sonification, digital collaboration, cultural analytics, online learning, the distributed LMS, self-hosting, should humanities students learn to program?, images of art, a Caribbean platform of criticism, and some media archeology of sound.


As always: Have an idea for a DH course or project? Get in touch to draw on our DH consultancy of Tri-Co faculty and outside experts. Have an item you would like included in this email? Let us know about it. Have an idea for a 2016-2017 TDH workshop, speaker, or other event? Let us know.


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Coming up at the Tri-Co: workshops, talks, events, resources


“The Science of Learning, Technology, and Student Success in Liberal Education,” a talk by Dr. Candace M. Thille (Stanford University). June 18, Haverford College, Stokes Auditiorium, 11:30 am. The talk is open to the public; please register.  “This talk will be a major highlight on the program of LACOL2016, a two-day, consortium-wide workshop organized by the Liberal Arts Consortium for Online Learning.  In her remarks, Dr. Thille will explore both the opportunities and risks ahead as we move further into the blended, digital future of teaching and learning for the liberal arts. She will consider ways that faculty, staff and students at small liberal arts colleges can effectively contribute to shaping a more positive and transparent future.”


If you missed the The TDH Spring Lectures: “Tudor Networks of Power” by Ruth Ahnert (School of English, Queen Mary University of London) and Sebastian Ahnert (Department of Physics, University of Cambridge) on their work reconstructing the evidence for Tudor government networks, despair not: you can still listen to them talk about their work or read their recent article.


The Swarthmore Digital Humanities Student Reading Group (DiHum) convenes on euphoria.io anytime and holds planning meetings every third Friday during the school year. Take a look at their New Digital Humanities Manifesto. Students from across the Tri-Co are welcome to attend in person or via machine. Come share your interest in digital archive studies, critical informatics, social media research, videogame studies, computational text analysis, and more. Fill out this form for more information. Follow them on Twitter @SwatDiHum to meet their mascot, the cyborg Hu-Manatee.

Coming up in the region:


The W0rdLab is a text analysis research interest community at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries for all related research and disciplines; all are welcome. http://w0rdlab.org/


The 2016 Keystone Digital Humanities Conference will be held at the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from June 22-24, 2016. The call for papers deadline has past, but attending the conference can be a great way to meet collaborators and find out about work by your colleagues in PA, plus see Roopika Risam’s keynote presentation, entitled, “Only Collaborate! Postcolonial Imperatives for Community in the Digital Humanities.”


Also coming up in the region, with proposal DUE TODAY!: Negotiating Borders through Digital Collaboration (Bucknell, October 28-30) "This conference will bring together a broad community of practitioners–faculty, researchers, librarians, educational technologists, and students–who are using technology to rethink seemingly intractable borders within and outside of the university. We define “borders” as boundaries that limit access; conditions that differentiate insiders from outsiders; or any obstacle that impairs open communication and collaboration. We invite proposals that explore or critique digital modes of scholarly, cultural, and political intersectionality. Special consideration will be given to proposals that demonstrate how crossing institutional boundaries, whether within or beyond the university, can facilitate the expansion of borders, broadly conceived."

Proposals by June 15.

Archives, tools, and tutorials


Sound of Data (a gentle introduction to sonification for historians), a new Programming Historian tutorial by Shawn Graham. Listen to your data instead of visualizing it.


Another one of those command line primers for beginners.


A nice list of some text databases that offer text-mining access to researchers. (From the USC library, so includes some USC-specific info, but the Tri-Co libraries subscribe to many of these and similar access would be available to Tri-Co library patrons.)


Metabotnik: create huge, zoomable images. (in progress)


A Reclaim Hosting account is one way total beginners can get started hosting their own websites and experimenting with and customizing your own instances of web applications like WordPress, WikiMedia, Omeka, Drupal, Moodle, various databases, RSS feed readers, and much, much more. Their quick-start four-video guide that will take you through each step of getting up and running.  (Reclaim is a company run by former staff at the University of Mary Washington’s academic technology program. I tend not to include pay-for services in this email, but leading digital humanities and digital scholarship programs are increasingly using Reclaim, and I think it is worth knowing about.)


1.8 Million Free Works of Art from World-Class Museums: A Meta List of Great Art Available Online on Open Culture.


As always: UCLA’s Intro to Digital Humanities course materials are full of resources, tutorials, and readings to help get you started with some basic DH methods and approaches.The Programming Historian’s well-tested tutorials are an excellent path for those seeking more in-depth, detailed guidance on specific methods and topics.





The Quipu Project: a sonic digital history of forced sterilization in Peru.


More sonification: ClockWork is “a multidimensional method for representing the purchasing power of wages against commodities over time in sound using the programming language SuperCollider” from students at the UVA Scholar’s Lab.


Media archeology of sound: Jacob: Recording on Wire is a reconstruction of Valdemar Poulsen’s 1898 experiments “with impressing sound on wire. Holed up in a cabin in rural Denmark, he recorded, replayed, erased, and rerecorded the name, “Jacob.” We imitated this experiment and will be exhibiting it on the UVic campus at the Audain Gallery, in the Visual Arts Building, Tuesday, June 14th through Friday, June 17th.”


City Readers: Digital Historical Collections at the New York Society Library. “Explore more than 100,000 records of books, readers, and borrowing history from the New York Society Library's Special Collections.”


In "Topic Modeling Modernism/modernity" Jonathan Goodwin applies a set of machine learning and text analysis tools (including topic modeling, word2vec, and citation analysis) to all of the articles ever published in the journal Modernism/modernity. Includes interactive visualizations.  


small axe: a caribbean platform of criticism is a new Caribbean platform for social, political, and cultural criticism. “Our aim is to engage existing practices of criticism in and on the regional and diasporic Caribbean, as a way, not simply of dismissing them, but of better understanding their sources and their uses, their yield as much as their limits, so as to gauge whether or to what extent their aims and motivations might be revised and expanded.” See especially their “Translating the Caribbean” project.



Should humanities students (or all liberal arts students, for that matter) learn to program? Elias Muhanna in “Hacking the Humanities” (a short piece in the New Yorker, 2015),  Matt Kirschenbaum’s short 2011 article “Hello World,” and Bethany Nowviskie’s recent interview in the Los Angeles Review of Books (one in a series on DH) offer rich, skeptical, and generative responses.  Related: “To Write Better Code, Read Virginia Woolf” in the New York Times.


Speaking of the LARB DH series, the best interview so far is with Marisa Parham (Professor of English at Amherst College and 2016 Re:Humanities keynote speaker). One notable excerpt: “There’s a way in which the notion that the technological has nothing to do with people of color is embedded in society. It runs deeply...So on the one hand you get the institutional argument for how technology and the digital will make the humanities more relevant while simultaneously claiming that certain populations don’t need the digital...Black communities around the world are innovation engines, but Blacks are never seen as innovators. They make something new but are never seen as inventors.” Read more.


Scott Weingart, Digital History Can Never Be New. “If you claim computational approaches to history (“digital history”) lets historians ask new types of questions, or that they offer new historical approaches to answering or exploring old questions, you are wrong. You’re not actually wrong, but you are institutionally wrong, which is maybe worse.” Read to the bottom for his short list of some of the best new work in digital history that “skirts the line, offering something just novel enough to be surprising, but not so out of traditional historical bounds as to be grouped with culturomics.”


Most of us probably won’t make it to the “Reading Beyond Reading” conference at the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for the History of the Book in July, but we can read the talk abstracts.


Debates in the Digital Humanities 2016 is out! “Pairing full-length scholarly essays with shorter pieces drawn from scholarly blogs and conference presentations, as well as commissioned interviews and position statements, Debates in the Digital Humanities 2016 reveals a dynamic view of a field in negotiation with its identity, methods, and reach.” Print version coming soon to Tri-Co libraries; online version coming soon (will include link and overview of key essays when available).


If you attended the 2016 Blended Learning in the Liberal Arts conference at BMC last month or plan to be at LACOL at Haverford this week, you may be interested in reading what Audrey Watters has to say about moving “Beyond the LMS [learning management system],” these tips for creating a disaggregated LMS (ie, using different platforms instead of Moodle), how students can have ownership of their learning data, or the recent MIT report on online learning.

Notable new syllabi and teaching resources


Recent undergraduate digital humanities projects:


Listen to 18thc novel prefaces read aloud by various voices, one element of Haverford student Kat Poje's Preface Project.


Two undergraduate DH projects - one on early modern emblem books and one on digital editions of Ulysses - by students at the University of Calgary.


Repeat notice of some important teaching resources:


Get started with text analysis right away with the just-released new and improved Voyant 2.0! Read the quick start guide, explore examples of assignments on their website, and read the companion book, coming soon to Tripod. Highly recommended. The TDH faculty consultancy can connect you with fellow instructors who have successfully worked with Voyant in the classroom.


If you are thinking about integrating Wikipedia editing work into your teaching, WikiEdu has amazing resources, and the TDH faculty consultancy can connect you with fellow instructors and outside experts who have successfully worked with Wikipedia in the classroom.


The in-progress Modern Languages Association’s project Keywords for Keywords for Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities: Concepts, Models, and Experiments is a curated collection of downloadable, reusable, and remixable pedagogical resources.


As always, the Digital Humanities Slack run by Amanda Visconti and others has more than 51 channels where you can learn from and talk to scholars and students from many different backgrounds and levels of expertise about topics ranging from annotation to crowdsourcing to visualization to involving students in DH projects. Sign up here.

CFPs, grants, workshops, opportunities




Saving the Web: The Ethics and Challenges of Preserving What’s on the Internet is a A day-long symposium at the Library of Congress’s John W. Kluge Center. Thursday June 16, 2016  |  9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.


2016 Workshop on Visualization in the Digital Humanities. Baltimore, MD. “We invite contributions for the 2016 Workshop on Visualization for the Digital Humanities. This will be a one day workshop taking place as part of IEEE VIS 2016 in Baltimore, MD. http://ieeevis.org/ The purpose of this workshop is to propose new research directions in visualization for the digital humanities, to familiarize the visualization research community with the problems faced by digital humanities researchers, and to foster future collaboration between visualization and digital humanities research.”



New! Digital Humanities Advancement Grants from the NEH. “The NEH is eliminating both the DH Start-Up Grant Program and the DH Implementation Grant program and replacing them with a single program that will be offered twice per year that will combine features from both programs. The new program is called Digital Humanities Advancement Grants (DHAG).” Deadline: January 11, 2017, with opportunities to apply every six months from that time forward.


The Digging into Data Challenge has been funding cutting-edge digital research in the humanities and social sciences since 2009. Now under the auspices of T-AP, the program will support collaborative research teams from three continents: Europe (Finland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal (to be confirmed) and the United Kingdom); North America (Canada, Mexico, the United States); and South America (Brazil and Argentina). A great grant for anyone doing international digital research.



Negotiating Borders through Digital Collaboration (Bucknell, October 28-30)

"This conference will bring together a broad community of practitioners–faculty, researchers, librarians, educational technologists, and students–who are using technology to rethink seemingly intractable borders within and outside of the university. We define “borders” as boundaries that limit access; conditions that differentiate insiders from outsiders; or any obstacle that impairs open communication and collaboration. We invite proposals that explore or critique digital modes of scholarly, cultural, and political intersectionality. Special consideration will be given to proposals that demonstrate how crossing institutional boundaries, whether within or beyond the university, can facilitate the expansion of borders, broadly conceived."

Proposals by June 15.


HASTAC 2017: The Possible Worlds of Digital Humanities. Thursday, November 2, 2017 to Saturday, November 4, 2017.  The annual meeting of HASTAC (Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology Alliance and Collaboratory), an organization focused on “the role of humanistic learning in the Information Age.” Hosted by the Florida Digital Humanities Consortium #HASTAC17 Orlando, Florida.


Submit your work to a special issue of Feminist Media Histories on "Data," coedited by Miriam Posner (UCLA) and Lauren Klein (Georgia Tech). Fuller details. http://fmh.ucpress.edu/sites/default/files/CFP_FMH3.3_Data.pdf


New journal! Cultural Analytics is “a new open-access journal dedicated to the computational study of culture. Its aim is to promote high quality scholarship that intervenes in contemporary debates about the study of culture using computational and quantitative methods.”


Social Media and Voices in the Margins (Howard U., Oct. 6-7)

“The 6th Annual Social Media Technology Conference & Workshop is a two-day intensive conference combining panel discussions, posters sessions and hands-on workshops designed to enlighten attendees about new scholarship, professional practices and pedagogical approaches to teaching. This year’s theme focuses on dissecting how power and difference force or provide an opportunity for social media to be used by those who may be considered marginalized in U.S. society or within other countries. The goal is to bring scholars and professionals together to share their perspectives on how social media are utilized by various individuals, groups, cultures or organizations to bring their voice, influence and impact on societies.”


Historicising the Digital, BAAL-CUP seminar at the University of Leicester, UK. 27-28 June 2016. This conference “provides a space in which researchers are encouraged to re-evaluate assumptions and claims of digital communication research. The event explores the extent to which digital practices really are “new”. What precedents might be found in earlier periods? What practices show continuity between the pre- and post-digital age? What practices constitute genuine innovation within digital spaces? The event invites speakers working within different historical periods who may not otherwise join in conversation to promote fresh discussions from a trans-historical perspective.”


French-Language DH (Digital Humanities Quarterly). "With the goal of highlighting the work of Digital Humanities in French to our audience, we invite you to participate in a special issue of the Digital Humanities Quarterly magazine. This number is the second of several planned for DHQ in different languages or regional traditions. The deadline for submitting articles is September 30, 2016. The items must be presented in French, and should be in the range of 10-30 pages, using the editorial guidelines of the DHQ journal. You should send the item, following these guidelines todhqfrench@gmail.com, with the subject “DHQ numéro spécial FR”, with French and English versions of the abstract." Via Miriam Posner.


Caribbean Digital 2016 (NYC, Dec. 2) "Following on conversations that animated our events in 2014 and 2015, we look forward in this third public forum to engaging critically with the digital as practice and as historicized societal phenomenon, reflecting on the challenges and opportunities presented by the media technologies that evermore intensely reconfigure the social and geographic contours of the Caribbean." Via Miriam Posner.  Abstracts by July 15.

Selected jobs and paid internships for undergraduates:


Lots and lots of Vox Media jobs.


Editorial Assistant/ Assistant Editor, HarperCollins (NYC)

"Attention pop culture junkies! The Creative Development Team at HarperCollins is currently seeking an Editorial Assistant or Assistant Editor to provide administrative and editorial support to the department. The Creative Development department tracks what is hot in the media – tv, movies, celebrities, music, sports, online, current events, etc. – and then develops proposals to bring to potential authors. This department acquires for all HarperCollins imprints. If you love books and are into the biggest trends before they are even trends – this may be the perfect job for you!" Via Miriam Posner.


Miriam Posner lists DH-related jobs and internships for undergrads (LA-focused, but including national and international opportunities) on her Pinboard.  

Digital Humanities Now jobs listings also may be of interest.