Tag Archives: Digital humanities

Launching Defining Digital Humanities!

This is a guest post from Melissa Terras, one of the editors of Defining Digital Humanities (just published, December 2013). It originally appeared on the dedicated Defining Digital Humanities blog on the UCL website.

Defininf Digital HumanitiesWe’re really pleased – after two years of discussion, editing, and working with Ashgate, that Defining Digital Humanities is finally out in both print and ebook formats.

Given the growth in Digital Humanities centers and courses, we wanted to pull together core readings in our field – from both “Humanities Computing” and “Digital Humanities” – that would give the flavour of the various discussions that have occurred when people have tried to define Digital Humanities. Our editorial stance is not to define DH ourselves, but to present the core content that appear on various syllabi, in one handy print volume that can be used in class, or by those interested in understanding more about why the term Digital Humanities is so used, and so discussed.

As is the nature with a reader text, most of the content is available elsewhere: on this site we link to the online versions of the materials published in the book, although some of the content is behind paywalls.  We provide one major new chapter written by Edward Vanhoutte on the histories of Digital Humanities, which we make freely available on this site. We also hope to keep the further reading section on this site updated with newer blog posts, and journal articles, which add to the discussion of that it means to undertake Digital Humanities activities, and we’ll be adding additional content to the site as time goes on. The print volume also contains introductions to each featured article, and comments from most article authors, as well as a list of questions that can be used in a taught class to spark discussion.

We believe we’ve created a very useful compendium of texts which is a starting point when trying to understand the field which is now described as Digital Humanities. You can follow @DefiningDH on twitter, and please do let us know of other content that we should be including on this site.

Willard McCarty – “the Obi-Wan Kenobi” of Digital Humanities – wins the 2013 Busa Award

We are delighted to learn that Willard McCarty has won the 2013 Busa Award. The announcement was made on behalf of Matthew Jockers, chairman of the Busa Award committee, at the recent Digital Humanities conference in Hamburg.

The Busa Award is “named in honour of Father Roberto Busa and is given to recognise outstanding lifetime achievement in the application of information technology to humanistic research”.

From Matthew Jockers’ announcement:

“The winner of the 2013 Busa Award is a man of legendary kindness and generosity. His contributions to the growth and prominence of Digital Humanities will be familiar to us all. He is a gentleman, a scholar, a philosopher, and a long time fighter for the cause. He is, by one colleague’s accounting, the “Obi-Wan Kenobi” of Digital Humanities. And I must concur that “the force” is strong with this one. Please join me in congratulating Willard McCarty on his selection for the 2013 Busa Award. ”

Willard McCarty is Professor of Humanities Computing, Department of Digital Humanities, King’s College London, and Professor, Centre for Cultural Research, University of Western Sydney, Australia.

He is co-editor, with Marilyn Deegan, of Collaborative Research in the Digital Humanities, a book which celebrates the contributions of Harold Short to the Digital Humanities field.

Digital humanities

Ashgate’s new Digital Humanities 2012 leaflet is now available to browse online or download. Highlights include: Collaborative Research in the Digital Humanities, edited by Marilyn Deegan and Willard McCarty, and the latest books in the Digital Research in the Arts and Humanities series edited by Marilyn Deegan, Lorna Hughes, Andrew Prescott, and Harold Short.

Ashgate will be attending Digital Humanities 2012 in Hamburg, 16-20th July and the Digital Humanities Congress in Sheffield, 6-8th September. If you have an idea for a book proposal please get in touch and arrange a meeting with our publisher, Dymphna Evans.

Harold Short speaking about collaborative scholarship in the digital humanities at the University of Melbourne

At a special seminar being held this Friday at the University of Melbourne, Professor Harold Short of the Department of Digital Humanities, King’s College London, will talk about researching the humanities and social sciences in the digital age.

Drawing on the twenty years’ experience in multidisciplinary research projects of the Department of Digital Humanities at King’s College London, Harold Short will present some reflections on the challenges faced in large collaborative projects and possible approaches to meeting those challenges. Particular emphasis will be given to the points of stress, the continuing areas of difficulty and the problems faced by collaborative research in the arts and humanities in a wider academic culture that is slow to change.

Harold Short is Professor of Humanities Computing at King’s College London, and a Visiting Professor at the University of Western Sydney in the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics. At King’s, Professor Short founded and directed the Centre for Computing in the Humanities, now the Department of Digital Humanities, of which he was the Head until his retirement in 2010. He is a former Chair of both the Alliance of Digital Humanities Organisations and the Association for Literary and Linguistic Computing, and is a general editor of the Ashgate series Digital Research in the Arts and Humanities.

Digital Research in the Arts and Humanities series has a new editor

We are extending the remit of the Digital Research in the Arts and Humanities series beyond the original nine titles and welcome on board a new series editor, Andrew Prescott, who is Professor and Director of Research, Humanities Advanced Technology and Information Institute, School of Humanities, University of Glasgow, UK. 

We would like to encourage authors to submit proposals to the series for single-authored or multi-authored books. 

If you have an idea you would like to discuss, even if it is at an early stage, please contact our Publisher, Dymphna Evans.

How historians and archeologists are using digital technologies

We were very pleased last week to see another review for The Virtual Representation of the Past, this time in the Times Literary Supplement.

‘This collection … gives notice that the humanities, like books themselves, are finding new ways to talk.’

The Virtual Representation of the Past is edited by Mark Greengrass and Lorna Hughes. The contributors approach digital research in history and archaeology from contrasting viewpoints, including philosophical, methodological and technical.

Contributors to the volume include: Andrew Prescott, Meg Twycross, Donald Spaeth, Fabio Ciravegna, Mark Greengrass, Tim Hitchcock, Sam Chapman, Jamie McLaughlin, Ravish BhagdevCaroline Bowden, Julian D. Richards, Catherine Hardman, Manfred Thaller, Vincent Gaffney, Ian Gregory, Paul Cripps, David Arnold, Richard Beacham, Anna Bentkowska-Kafel.

Other reviews:

‘…more than just a fascinating read about how historians and archaeologists are beginning to use digital technologies. It asks subtle questions about what happens to the past when it is represented digitally, about how digital technology can be used to reveal the layers of interpretation which have accumulated around surviving traces of past activity, and at the same time how it adds new layers of meaning which somehow must also be recognized and revealed…Librarians and archivists might well compare their own practices and values with those described here and think about the ways in which they are also creating virtual representations of the past.’    The Electronic Library

‘The book is a comprehensive academic and technical contribution to this specialist subject area by a distinguished team of leading experts. I am sure it will be invaluable to students, researchers and practitioners – it will certainly be a valuable addition to our library’  Program Vol 43, No 4, 2010

”Virtual Representation of the Past succeds well in its aim to critically evaluate the virtual representation of the past through digital media… recommended to the scholarly community interested in using the latest ICTs and methods to represent the past. This would include scholars from the humanities such as historians and archaeologists, as well as scholars from informatics and computer science.’    Online Information Review, Vol 34, no 2, 2010

‘In an age when the objects of scholarly analysis in the arts and humanities are rapidly moving from the physical world to the virtual realm, researchers from all disciplines need a better understanding of the possibilities and potential of computational theory and methods. The fascinating essays in ‘The Virtual Representation of the Past’ explore the cutting edge of new techniques enabled by the digital age – from data- and text-mining to search to spatial technology – while remaining firmly rooted in the humanistic tradition. The book is approachable and thought-provoking.’    Daniel Cohen, George Mason University, USA

‘This excellent volume, by established and younger scholars, offers a definitive overview of the current landscape from a multidisciplinary perspective. The transformative opportunities that technology has to offer humanities researchers are highlighted, together with the scale of the challenges in an age of where so little thought is given to interoperability and long-term issues such as sustainability.’    Jane Ohlmeyer, Trinity College, Ireland

‘…plenty of food for thought for readers wishing to utilise technologies to analyse and represent meta-data visually….a valuable model worthy of emulation across other countries and professions.’   Australian Academic & Research Libraries

More information about The Virtual Representation of the Past…


The radical impact of digital technology on all the disciplines associated with the visual arts

Newly published in Ashgate’s Digital Research in the Arts and Humanities series, Revisualizing Visual Culture provides expert views of the radical impact of digital technology on the study of the visual arts.

Exploring in book format the impact of information and communication technologies on the disciplines of art history and visual culture might seem incongruous at first. Yet it is precisely the pause between technological advance and epistemological catch-up – and the nature of these adjustments – that this lively and engaging publication asks us to consider. The essays cover from multiple perspectives some key issues facing historians of art and visual culture in the 21st century: from scholars who have observed the impact of ICT on their fields in recent years, to younger writers of the digital generation who have known nothing else. From the electronic structures that comprise and deliver digital images and associated data, to the shifting relations between custodians, curators and the widened constituencies with which they now engage, the impact of ICT is one that has far-ranging ramifications on the formation of knowledge and the practices of visual culture research. This book will play an important role in provoking thought about these issues’.
Catherine Moriarty, Brighton University, UK

Revisualizing Visual Culture is edited by Chris Bailey and Hazel Gardiner.

About the Editors: Chris Bailey is Professor of Cultural History and Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Society at Leeds Metropolitan University. Hazel Gardiner is Editor for the Corpus of Romanesque Sculpture in Britain and Ireland and joint-editor of the CHArt (the Computers and the History of Art) Yearbook. She was Senior Project Officer for the AHRC ICT Methods Network.

Contents: Preface; Introduction: making knowledge visual, Chris Bailey; Do a thousand words paint a picture?, Mike Pringle; The semantic web approach to improving access to cultural heritage, Kirk Martinez and Leif Isaksen; Resource discovery and curation of complex and interactive digital datasets, Stuart Jeffrey; Digital exploration of past design concepts in architecture, Daniela Sirbu; Words as keys to the image bank, Doireann Wallace; For one and all: participation and exchange in the archive, Sue Breakell; The user-archivist and collective (in)voluntary memory: read/writing the networked digital archive, James McDevitt; Internet art history 2.0, Charlotte Frost; Museum migration in century 2.08, Jemima Rellie; Slitting open the Kantian eye, Charlie Gere; Bibliography; Index.

For full information, and to read Chris Bailey’s introductory chapter, visit the Ashgate website.


New books – Art, Information Management (Digital Humanities), Sociology, Music

Art and Visual Studies

Art and Visual Studies Art, History and the Senses: 1830 to the Present Edited by Patrizia Di Bello and Gabriel Koureas

Maria Spilsbury (1776–1820): Artist and Evangelical Charlotte Yeldham 

The Viewer and the Printed Image in Late Medieval Europe David S. Areford

Later Stuart Portraits: 1685–1714 John Ingamells  (A Lund Humphries book)

Information Management

Revisualizing Visual Culture Edited by Chris Bailey and Hazel Gardiner  #digitalhumanities

Sociology and Social Policy

Plural Masculinities: The Remaking of the Self in Private Life Sofia Aboim

Screening Generation X: The Politics and Popular Memory of Youth in Contemporary Cinema Christina Lee 

Technology and Medical Practice: Blood, Guts and Machines Edited by Ericka Johnson and Boel Berner

Women’s Work and Pensions: What is Good, What is Best?: Designing GenderSensitive Arrangements Bernd Marin and Eszter Zólyomi


Carl Nielsen Studies: Volume 4 Edited by Niels Krabbe

Music, Sound, and Silence in Buffy the Vampire Slayer Edited by Paul Attinello, Janet K. Halfyard and Vanessa Knights

Shostakovich in Dialogue: Form, Imagery and Ideas in Quartets 1-7 Judith Kuhn

Wax Trash and Vinyl Treasures: Record Collecting as a Social Practice Roy Shuker