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Demystifying Digital Humanities Fall Workshop 1


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Slides from the first autumn 2014 DMDH workshop.

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Demystifying Digital Humanities Fall Workshop 1

  1. 1. What is DH, and why does it matter? Have you taken the DH Profile Quiz?
  2. 2. Defining DH • By when it began (1946, approximately: date of Roberto Busa’s plan for the Codex Thomisticus) • Its stability, or lack thereof • Its self-consciously mutable and multimodal nature • According to its friction with traditional a.k.a. analog humanities
  3. 3. What others say “I don’t. I’m sick of trying to define it. When forced to, “...I’ll I like “I make think to say the digital that referent humanities digital the humanities people is an unfortunate instead is just of one the ideas or method methods for -- doing Digital humanistic Humanities enquiry.” is the thing practiced by people who self-identify as Digital Humanists. It’s helpful to have a name for the field chiefly for institutional authority. Though granted I think it does involve coding/making/building/doing things with computers, things related to, you know, neologism, largely because the humanities itself is --Brian Croxall, Emory University a problematic term.” --Trevor Owens, Library of Congress “A term of tactical convenience.” --Matthew Kirschenbaum, U of Maryland the humanities.” --Amanda French, Center for History and New Media
  4. 4. Values behind DH
  5. 5. Goals: what we can do • Provide necessary background and vocabulary via these workshops and the DMDH website. • Make the digital humanities a safer, less intimidating, and more welcoming space for experimenting. • Allow you to begin charting your own course, and developing your own projects. • Build a DH cohort at UW.
  6. 6. Limits: what we can’t do CAN BECOME A DIGITAL HUMANIST
  7. 7. But don’t worry...
  8. 8. Websites for Evaluation Old Bailey Online : DHPoco - Rewriting Wikipedia Project : The Homer Multitext Project : TranscribeBentham : UVic Maker Lab in the Humanities: and
  9. 9. Website Evaluation Questions What do you see as the project teams’ priorities? Which DH values do you see in operation? What sort of usage (and user) is being posited? What aspects (if any) aren’t working well? Is there anything else that stands out, or raises questions for you?
  10. 10. Flash Project Development (Students at Cabrini College brainstorm a DH project on porn. Image c/o Adeline Koh.) Brainstorm a DH project with your team!
  11. 11. Flash Project Brainstorming Will it focus on one distinct topic? Or on bringing multiple topics together? What perspectives do you want it to explore? What artefacts will it contain, or collect? How will users interact and/or contribute? What forms (modes) will it take?
  12. 12. Resources for further training and collaboration DMDH ( HASTAC ( DHSI ( TEI Seminars at Brown University ( UW Libraries Workshops ( Profhacker ( Online coding courses: Skillcrush ( and Codecademy (, many others (just google!) Digital Humanities on Twitter -- no account needed (
  13. 13. With thanks to our sponsors... Faculty sponsors: Tyler Fox, Ann Lally, Brian Reed, Miceal Vaughan, Stacy Waters, Helene Williams
  14. 14. Works Cited The quotes in the slide “What others say” were taken from the essay “Day of DH,” in Debates in the Digital Humanities, edited by Matthew K. Gold, and published by the University of Minnesota Press in 2012. Thanks to Adeline Koh for permission to use the image in Slide 11.