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Debates in the Digital Humanities

2012

Matthew K. Gold, Editor

Debates in the Digital Humanities

OPEN ACCESS EDITION

 

Leading figures in the digital humanities explore the field’s rapid revolution

Debates in the Digital Humanities brings together leading figures in the field to explore its theories, methods, and practices and to clarify its multiple possibilities and tensions. Together, the essays suggest that the digital humanities is uniquely positioned to contribute to the revival of the humanities and academic life.

"Is there such a thing as ‘digital’ humanities? From statistical crunches of texts to new forms of online collaboration and peer review, it’s clear something is happening. This book is an excellent primer on the arguments over just how much is changing—and how much more ought to—in the way scholars study the humanities."
—Clive Thompson, columnist for Wired and contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine
Debates in the Digital Humanities

Debates in the Digital Humanities

Is there such a thing as ‘digital’ humanities? From statistical crunches of texts to new forms of online collaboration and peer review, it’s clear something is happening. This book is an excellent primer on the arguments over just how much is changing—and how much more ought to—in the way scholars study the humanities.

Clive Thompson, columnist for Wired and contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine

I look forward to the day when anxieties about the disruptive nature of ‘digital humanities’ fade into memory and the innovative methods, theories, and approaches championed by those who have contributed to this valuable volume are respected across academia for their rigor and utility. This book will go a long way toward clarifying the debates within and about digital humanities.

Siva Vaidhyanathan, author of The Googlization of Everything—and Why We Should Worry

[The book] reflects . . . the diversity, openness, and community spirit of the digital humanities.

Inside Higher Ed

Though Debates in the Digital Humanities is well over 500 pages in length, there is no fat in it; all essays contain important information and concepts relating to DH. Taken together, the book as a whole and every essay in it is a must-read for anyone who claims to be a digital humanist whether she or he works in theory, pedagogy, and/or practice.

Leonardo Reviews

A substantial collection . . . [whose] contributors include most of the scholars who have been most prominent in the emergence of digital humanities over the past few years.

Times Literary Supplement

The essays in Gold’s collection demonstrate the positive effects of a cross-fertilization of ideas, as the authors often refer to one another in their work. The result is an anthology that reads like a conversation—dynamic, capacious, and at times diffuse, but one that always returns to core concerns about the meaning, function, and future of this emerging field.

American Quarterly

Provides not only a valuable primer for any newcomer interested in exploring digital humanities, but also a detailed exploration and critique. . . Gold has managed to balance the need to provide a detailed survey of the subject with an incisive look at the complexities inherent in both the ‘making’ aspect and the ‘thinking’ aspect of digital humanities.

Information, Communication & Society

This collection of some fifty articles and blog posts by leading scholars in the field, elegantly printed, provides a rich exploration by way of self-reflection on the field as it has emerged in academic departments in the humanities, particularly in English and History, in recent years.

The Key Reporter

Gold’s anthology is absolutely the necessary starting point for those who want to catch up on debates in the field, learn about the history of digital humanities, and contemplate a future application to their art historical work. Gold should be highly commended, given that he gives us a book so far reaching but also honest about its moment.

Visual Resources

Debates in the Digital Humanities

Debates in the Digital Humanities

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The University of Minnesota's Institute for Advanced Study has posted video from Debates in the Digital Humanities editor Matt Gold's visit to campus.

 

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UMP blog - Representation and the digital environment: Essential challenges for humanists. By Johanna Drucker.

 

The basic challenge for humanists comes from adopting visualizations that don’t suit our fundamental epistemological values. Obviously humanism is not monolithic. But methods of statistical analysis and empirical observation are grafted onto the humanities, they were not created from within the traditions of textual analysis and study. Put simply, the distinction between humanistic and empirical methods is the difference between interpretation and scientific positivism. I have no quarrel with the latter, only with the ways visualization techniques from the natural and social sciences have been adopted for use in the humanities. The result is reductive, and in most instances, produces a reification of misinformation. Exceptions exist.

 

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