CFP: Digital Americanists Panel at ALA 2018

The Digital Americanists Society solicits abstracts (c. 250 words) for papers to be included in the Society’s pre-arranged session at the 2018 American Literature Association Conference (San Francisco, May 24-27, 2018).

We are especially interested in submissions focusing on data-sets, texts, archives, tools or projects/methodologies that deal with intersections of gender, race, sexuality, nationality, and/or disability in literature and digital work. Submissions focusing on texts from any period of American literature are welcome.

In keeping with the Digital Americanists’ commitment to a broad understanding of American literature, culture, digital media, and computational methods, we are pleased to consider submissions that address any facet of the relationship between those terms or that question the terms themselves. Submissions from early-career scholars and members of underrepresented groups are especially encouraged.

Deadline for submissions is Monday, January 15, 2018. Send abstracts or questions by email to digitalamericanists@gmail.com. For more information about the Digital Americanists Society, see http://digitalamericanists.org. For information about the ALA and the 2018 conference, see http://americanliteratureassociation.org.

 

 

New Board for the Digital Americanists

Dear past, current, and future members,

We are happy to announce that the Digital Americanists have found a new board. Beginning September 2017, the leadership of DA will be:

Stefan Schöberlein (President) is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Iowa, the managing editor of the Walt Whitman Quarterly Review, and a research assistant for the Walt Whitman Archive. His work has been published in journals like Digital Scholarship in the Humanities, American Literature, and the Journal of American Studies.

Kevin McMullen (Vice-President) is a PhD candidate at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a senior assistant editor at the Walt Whitman Archive. He is also a co-founder and editor of Fanny Fern in The New York Ledger, a project working to digitize the newspaper columns of nineteenth-century American writer Fanny Fern.

Stephanie M. Blalock (Secretary/Treasurer) is a Digital Humanities Librarian in the Digital Scholarship and Publishing Studio, at the University of Iowa Libraries. She is the Associate Editor of the Walt Whitman Archive, the Walt Whitman Quarterly Review, and The Vault at Pfaff’s. She is the author of “Go to Pfaff’s!”: The History of a Restaurant and Lager Beer Saloon, a peer-reviewed digital edition published by Lehigh University Press and The Vault at Pfaff’s, and she has also published several essays in Walt Whitman Quarterly Review. Her research focuses on Walt Whitman and Pfaff’s Beer Cellar and the reprinting and circulation of Whitman’s short fiction.

The new board looks forward to helping share and facilitate discussions of the exciting digital work happening in the field of American literature and culture around the world. Stay tuned to our website and social media channels for more information about upcoming DA events.

We would like to close by thanking Matthew Wilkens, Ryan Cordell, and Matthew Lavin for their years of dedication to the Digital Americanists.

On that note, and fully embracing our collective Whitmanian bias: Ya-honk!

Digital Humanities Pedagogy CFP for The CEA Critic

The editors of The CEA Critic recently accepted our proposal for a special issue on Digital Humanities Pedagogy (Spring 2014). We imagined having this special issue move beyond digital humanities theory to practical application with articles addressing pedagogical approaches to introducing undergraduates to one or more aspects of digital humanities:

  • transcribing, metadata writing, annotating, and basic TEI coding in conjunction with a startup or established digitization project
  •  datamining: creating narratives of digital texts based on searched terms or defining search terms for future researchers
  •  using digital editions to teach students paratextual influence
  •  analyzing and evaluating the vitality of and scholarly rigor within digital editions with ancillary editorial apparatuses versus open-source digital libraries (e.g. Project Gutenburg, Internet Archive, Google Books, Gale databases)
  • using TEI tags to enhance research skills and develop annotation awareness as both creator and user
  • writing hyperlinked annotations as a tool to increase scholarship and boost students’ researching skills
  • collaborating across disciplines to engage the non-humanities major in digital humanities projects

Proposals for the 3,000-5,000-word articles should not exceed 500 words. Please submit proposals to digitalhumanities@ttu.edu by 15 June 2013.

 

All queries should also be sent to the aforementioned email address. Please consult The CEA Critic site for formatting guidelines: http://www.cea-web.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=15&Itemid=30

Sobering thoughts on the decline of blogging

A recent Newsweek article (http://www.newsweek.com/2010/08/09/take-this-blog-and-shove-it.html) about the decline of blogging has left me feeling melancholic about the sense of infinite possibility that has surrounded the World Wide Web since the mid-90s. Newsweek reports that fewer and fewer people are writing their own blogs, fewer and fewer people are contributing to Wikipedia, and that, increasingly, people are using the Internet to shop, tweet, and check their Facebook accounts. In the Literature and the World Wide Web class that I teach every summer, I expose my students to some of the earliest writers of digital fiction and poetry, and the ethos of these writers is, more or less, that you can do anything online: forms and genres no longer constrain, publishers and editors no longer guard the gates, and information and knowledge want to be free. Almost twenty years into the Internet, though, it seems like that sense of possibility is diminishing. Our experience with the ‘Net is increasingly limited to a number of highly formalized platforms (Google, Facebook, etc.), and the radical future we once imagined is failing to materialize. Maybe I’m being too pessimistic. Maybe I’ve just let the scare tactics of Newsweek get to me. I will admit to being nostalgic for the mid-90s and the sense of possibility that the Internet represented.