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Digital Humanities [clear filter]
Thursday, May 12
 

10:45am

Relocating Addiction: A Digital Method for Examining the Expression of an Ongoing Heroin Epidemic
Between 2012 and June, 2015, Florida’s Manatee, Sarasota, and Desoto counties have witnessed a 137.5% increase in heroin deaths. The increase has cost the three counties thousands of dollars and has left family and community members in emotional pain. Clearly the epidemic calls for an intervention. However, current disciplinary solutions have been unable to offer a holistic treatment for this problem. For example, the Florida legislation continues to search for the correct way to punish drug users, the medical community continues to test the drug users’ brains to medicalize the problem, and mental health professionals continue to label drug users as insane. These methods can be problematic because disciplinary perspectives tend to place the problem within the individual drug user: addiction is considered a personal and not a public problem without considering external factors. Therefore, I argue we need to invent a research method that relocates drug use to environmental causes. I question, what conditions must be present for drug addiction to emerge as an epidemic and how does the built environment allow for addiction to express itself? In this project then, I report on an online timeline I created that digitally expresses one day in Manatee County. The one day timeline hosts recordings from a psychogeography performed in Manatee County (which included notes, photographs, and sound recordings), recordings of all police dispatches for that same day, and YouTube videos created within the county on that same day. To filter the media in the timeline, I used Greg Ulmer’s electracy methods to uncover a dialectical image which ties together the personal, environmental and social spheres to act as a lens for consulting on the heroin epidemic. I will report on this lens and how it may be helpful for offering a solution to the heroin epidemic in the counties.

Speakers

Thursday May 12, 2016 10:45am - 11:00am
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

11:00am

Building the Comic Book Readership Archive
The Comic Book Readership Archive project, or CoBRA, is a digital archive serving to document American comic book readership and fandom. Comics scholarship is an established area of academic research and the subject of thousands of dissertations, journal articles, book chapters, monographs, and digital projects. While comics readership has been a specific target of scholarly attention, previous studies have not fully considered the vast documentary record of comic book readership that will be compiled and analyzed by the CoBRA project.

Throughout 2015, Dr. John Walsh and I at Indiana University, along with colleagues Carol Tilley and Kathryn La Barre at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, created the CoBRA foundational archive. We have also begun collecting data from primary source material, and related sets, to record fan participation such as: fan mail, fan club publications and membership rolls, contests sponsored by publishers and fan clubs, fanzines, and programs and attendee records from comic book conventions and similar events.

To date, we have generated over 6,000 fan and fan mail records from ten comic book publications between 1961 and 1973: The Fantastic Four, The X-Men, Tales of Suspense, Tales to Astonish, The Amazing Spider-Man, Captain America, Daredevil, Strange Tales, Conan the Barbarian, and The Incredible Hulk. By January, we anticipate doubling the number of records in the current data set.

My presentation will provide a detailed overview of the project team’s archive development process and progress to date. I will also discuss future development plans, in addition to ways that CoBRA will prompt new research questions and enable multiple forms of digital scholarship, including computationally-assisted content and data analysis, plus interactive maps, timelines, and other visualizations to help researchers study readership networks and activities.

Speakers

Thursday May 12, 2016 11:00am - 11:15am
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

11:15am

New Materialism Meets Fabrication: A Methodology for Media History
This talk outlines a methodology for combining media studies with rapid prototyping and computer numerical control (CNC) techniques premised on remaking technologies that no longer function, no longer exist, or may have only existed as illustrations, fictions, or one-offs. Called “prototyping the past,” the methodology understands technologies as entanglements of culture, materials, and design, and it explains how and why technologies matter by approaching them as both representations and agents of history. Informed by Anne Balsamo's notion of hermeneutic reverse engineering (2011), it refuses to take historical materials at face value. It situates media history in a particular thing and the contradictory interpretations that thing affords. It also relies upon trial-and-error negotiation across modes of 2-D and 3-D production, creating media that function simultaneously as evidence and arguments for interpreting the past. Yet most important, prototyping the past does more than re-contextualize media history in the present. It integrates that history into the social, cultural, and ethical trajectories of design. To demonstrate the methodology, we detail how the “Kits for Cultural History” project at the University of Victoria prototypes absences in the historical record and prompts audiences to examine the conditions of that record. We then dedicate our attention to one Kit in particular: the “Early Wearables Kit,” which remakes an 1867 electro-mobile jewelry piece from Paris. After briefly interpreting the Early Wearables Kit from three different perspectives, we offer eight ways to understand prototyping and media history together, with a new materialist emphasis on how prototyping the past stresses the contingent relations between matter and meaning (Barad 2007). Ultimately, we show how new materialism may inform otherwise uncritical approaches to rapid prototyping, including popular techniques common across so-called "maker cultures." (For example material, see the attached PDF, which includes photographs of early wearable prototypes, a visualization of the design cycle for the Kits, and historical illustrations of the wearables.)


Thursday May 12, 2016 11:15am - 11:30am
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

1:00pm

Scholarly Communication and Collaboration Across Disciplinary Boundaries: Building Humanities Commons
With support from the Mellon Foundation, the Modern Language Association is in the midst of creating the Humanities Commons, a federated open-source network of sites that will link the MLA to other humanities societies to further interdisciplinary collaboration. During this pilot phase of the project, the MLA is establishing and connecting Commons networks for three partners, the College Art Association; the Association for Jewish Studies; and the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies, and building a central hub for members of these societies to work together.

A key element of this project will be the expansion of the scholarly association's beta repository, CORE, which facilitates the open-access distribution, discussion, and citation of the many products of humanities research, including online exhibitions, conference presentations, data sets, and learning objects such as syllabi and slide decks. A truly social repository, CORE currently connects with the MLA's special interest forums, enabling members to share their deposited work directly with the people likely to be most interested in reading and discussing it. This connection has resulted in enhanced discoverability that has been crucial in encouraging uptake and continued use of the repository.

CORE will expanded across the network of Humanities Commons spokes, opening up opportunities for participation in scholarly communication regardless of discipline or institution. A robust tagging system will allow any visitor to the Humanities Commons to discover scholarship that transcends or lives between disciplines, while benefitting the members of the scholarly societies by increasing the discoverability and impact of the objects of their humanities research.

In May 2016, CORE will be a year old, while Humanities Commons will have six months remaining in its grant period. In this HASTAC paper, the CORE and Humanities Commons project manager will discuss what the MLA team has learned from the successes, failures, and challenges encountered along the path to building an interdisciplinary commons.

Speakers

Thursday May 12, 2016 1:00pm - 1:15pm
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

1:15pm

Literature and Social Online Learning: An Interdisciplinary, Project-Based Undergraduate Course at Stanford University
This talk discusses the conceptual framework, learning goals and outcomes of an innovative undergraduate class my husband Sebastian Thrun (Computer Science) and I (Comparative Literature) taught at Stanford University in the Fall of 2014. Designed as a project-based course with truly interdisciplinary student teams and professor team, the class challenged the students to innovate the ways in which literature and serious literary study could be shared and enhanced for a broader reading public using the internet and social media. Through design thinking, rapid iteration, and built-in interdisciplinary challenges, the student teams developed and launched six separate projects in a mere 10 weeks: (new apps, websites, new social media platforms ranging from collaborative fan fiction to new comparative literary translations, music tracks to accompany books, a philosophy app based on Tinder, satirical literary quizzes, virtual reality environments for poems, and a curated social reading list app enhancing the Goodreads platform. The class was part of a new joint major program at Stanford University, called "CS+X" (with CS standing for Computer Science, and X for various humanities departments that have signed on). By bringing together "techies" and "fuzzies" who do not usually take classes together or work on projects together as a team, this class achieved different things than a typical interdisciplinary program or major would: it enabled a direct conversation between, and more importantly, a true grappling with, the differences in mindset and approach that characterize Computer Science and literary study, respectively. When the maker spirit and the spirit of reflection meet each other and occasionally clash, new thinking can emerge that neither discipline alone would be able to produce, expanding what it can mean to teach an interdisciplinary class, including unexpected challenges and joys. 


Thursday May 12, 2016 1:15pm - 1:30pm
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

1:30pm

Literary GIS Methodology Versus Platforms: Technological Affordances and Their Discontents
This proposed talk will explore the convergence of literary GIS as a methodological approach and the use of platforms such as Neatline, a plugin for Omeka exhibits that allows the developer to tell spatial stories in time. With the proliferation of platforms such as Omeka and Neatline for large and small scale projects,I argue that it is incumbent upon digital humanists to critically reflect not only on the technological affordances of GIS as a methodical approach, but also the positivistic pursuit of mappable data which has been said to elide “hidden chronologies” or complex social spaces such as gendered domestic environments, spaces not easily charted with the use of points, lines, and polygons. In order to do so, I will drawn from my own experiences building the urban compliment to David Cooper and Ian Gregory’s “Mapping the Lakes” (MTL), which composes an interactive digital map that plots William Wordsworth’s walking route detailed in his autobiographical poem The Prelude, particularly Book Seven, “Residence in London.” Similar to the MTL project, the aim of Mapping Wordsworth’s Conspicuous Consumption (MWCC) is not simply to visualize placenames within a poem, but to “open up methodological and critical space for the ongoing development of literary GIS.” This will be the first project of its kind to trace (or essentially hypothesize) the walking route of Wordsworth's “Residence in London” in Book Seven, linking the sites mentioned (and not mentioned) with images and text related to those sites on a historical map contemporaneous with three different moments: 1794-1797, 1805, and 1850. Thus the following critical questions will be explored: Because Neatline allows the designer to conjoin the map and the primary text, does the act of plotting spatial patterns embedded within the representation of the urban landscape ameliorate a purportedly teleological process? When do platforms obfuscate our ability as humanists to critically reflect on potential acts marginalization?

Speakers

Thursday May 12, 2016 1:30pm - 1:45pm
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

1:45pm

Challenge of Developing a Digital Humanities Center in India
This talk will reflect on the efforts of the team at the Center of Digital Humanities, Pune (CDH Pune) in establishing that center, and offer an outreach and consulting based model for new DH centers in underfunded contexts in the Global South. Taking up the conference’s focus on work, this talk will focus on the socio-technical, scholarly, and postcolonial labor practices which underpin CDH Pune.

When CDH Pune was instituted in 2013, it did not have substantive financial support. However, there was a strong scholarly interest, in Maharashtra, and more broadly, in India, in learning about the Digital Humanities. To fulfill this need, and act within our resources, we adopted an outreach and consulting approach as a nascent DH center. The goal of this outreach and consulting model is to cultivate a local DH community before undertaking major DH research projects. As a result of this approach, CDH Pune has successfully organized several DH events, and promoted DH as a central theme in two international conferences in India. The Center also offered consulting services for institutions that had resources, were interested in the Digital Humanities but required orientation. One of the projects which emerged from these consultations is a DH Certificate Course, designed by CDH Pune and to be offered at Pune University.

Our talk at HASTAC 2016 will discuss the successes and challenges of this model for new DH centers. We will particularly emphasize the postcolonial and decolonial principles which guide this model. As DH knowledge production primarily occurs in DH centers in Euro-American contexts, CDH Pune is committed to fostering a local and Indian DH, rather than importing Euro-American DH concerns. These postcolonial commitments are also reflected in our labor ethics, ranging from decisions about who builds and maintains IT infrastructures to which speakers are invited to events.


Thursday May 12, 2016 1:45pm - 2:00pm
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

2:30pm

Access, Expansion, and Boundaries in the Digital Humanities
What is the university’s responsibility to the public? How can it reach new populations? How can it participate in, influence, and learn from social and political movements happening outside of its boundaries? These are age old questions that are being asked and answered in new ways with the advent of digital humanities and online platforms of learning. In unprecedented ways, universities today have new avenues to reach and converse with populations, practitioners, activists, and leaders once outside its reach.

However, these new possibilities also open wider questions of access and reach. In what ways do online and digital educational technologies allow for new pedagogical possibilities reaching ever new students and participants? But also, we must ask, in what ways do new technologies limit our imaginations and conversations? Are universities also limiting their conversations through this emphasis on digital media? In other words, do these new possibilities both broaden and limit the academy’s reach and conversations with the public, and if so, what are the benefits and costs of the classroom’s new engagement with technology?

This panel asks these questions in the context of specific educational technologies: twitter, multi-modal dissertations, Massive Open Online Courses, and concept mapping. With each technology, we ask about the possibilities of new conversation partners, new students and populations reached by the academy. But we are also attuned by the limitations of the conversations. What boundaries do we redraw? How can we broaden access? How can we continue to be mindful of our limitations in the face of technology, and seek ever new ways of inclusion?


Thursday May 12, 2016 2:30pm - 3:45pm
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186
 
Friday, May 13
 

10:30am

Black Voices in Digital Spaces
As social media becomes an increasingly ubiquitous part of our daily lives I am drawn to the work of Black women vocally engaged in activism on Twitter. They are creating hashtags to raise awareness, organizing marches, and educating people about what it means to be Black in a world that violently attacks them on a daily basis. I find their public discourse work to be some of the most important digital work happening right now. Their voices are necessary in this ever-evolving social justice moment. In the first volume of Debates in the Digital Humanities Matthew Gold lays out the division between scholarly factions in the digital humanities. He says, “Indeed, fault lines have emerged within the DH community between those who use new digital tools to aid relatively traditional scholarly projects and those who believe that DH is most powerful as a disruptive political force that has the potential to reshape the fundamental aspects of academic practice”(x). I argue that this disruptive political force that asserts Black voices in the public sphere is a crucial part of the potential for digital humanities work. The digital humanities needs to make space for Black women’s voices, particularly those engaged in world changing work outside of the confines of the academy. Digital humanities scholarship needs to bridge the divide between the academy and the public. By bringing social justice work into the classroom, critically engaging new media, and amplifying Black activist voices, the digital humanities can do relevant social justice work. This presentation will look at Black feminist digital activism and the need for the field of the digital humanities to engage in the work of transforming the academy and society.

Speakers

Friday May 13, 2016 10:30am - 10:45am
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

10:45am

Mapping a Global Renaissance with 53,829 Texts
“Mapping a Global Renaissance with 53,829 Texts” redefines our understanding of a squarely humanistic problem: the history of race in Shakespeare’s era. By analyzing thousands of texts beyond the scope of a single famous author, such as Shakespeare or Milton, and even the capacity of the individual reader, I tell a very different story about the multiple discourses of race that helped motivate England’s earliest efforts to define its place in a global context in the era before colonialism. My primary technique, Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA) is a topic modeling algorithm that identifies clusters of words exhibiting a disproportionately high probability of occurring together in all texts discussing place names in the 53,829 texts of the Early English Books Online corpus. My results affirm and complicate recent postcolonial accounts of Shakespeare’s world by redefining the ideology of race in a more nuanced way than along the faultlines of identity politics. Through this methodology, I articulate an unfamiliar Renaissance vision of race by challenging the basic assumption that ethnic otherness has always been built upon a bedrock of bodily difference. The pre-modern idea of race was structured by a logic of place. Geography, and not skin color or anatomy, was the dominant factor in setting the terms of the debate. The primary question was how space, landscape, latitude, climate, and a location’s flora and fauna shaped a culture, its people, and their bodies. These results suggest the focus on the body as the measuring stick of racial ideologies should be understood as an invention of a colonialist worldview, and that historical alternatives to understand race in different terms exist. This study thus opens up a critical space to reanimate historically significant but unfamiliar models of race that we have lost in the postcolonial world.

Speakers

Friday May 13, 2016 10:45am - 11:00am
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186

11:00am

Design for Neurodiversity (DfN): A “Design for X” Process for Alternative Cognitive Styles
Up to 1 in 100 people today are affected by Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), which can manifest as an extreme sensitivity to sensory inputs, impaired social cognition, generalized anxiety, and difficulties with interpersonal communication and the expression of empathy. When an individual's executive functioning is not severely impaired, the autistic cognitive style is characterized by highly creative associative thinking, awareness of detail, and a strong degree of systematizing. The neurodiversity movement has emerged to raise awareness of this unique cognitive style, and help people leverage its strengths. Whereas accessible design envisions systems that are useful to people with disabilities, and universal design creates systems that are usable by all people to the greatest extent possible, there have been no structured design techniques targeting the needs associated with neurodiversity. This is significant because Human-Computer Interface (HCI) research has identified that more effectively addressing the needs of the rapidly increasing neurodiverse population would likely provide benefits for all people. This paper bridges that gap with Design for Neurodiversity (DfN), a new process for designing systems that the targets the sensory, cognitive, and relational aspects of process design. This structured design methodology is based on a comprehensive review of the design process viewed through the lens of Design for X (DfX) methods in concurrent engineering, and utilizes findings from participative ergonomics, participatory and interactive art, and the design of cognitive systems in artificial intelligence.


Friday May 13, 2016 11:00am - 11:15am
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  • Session Location COOR 186