Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities

The Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities is an annual, thematic exploration of issues in Digital Humanities at UNL. It is a reinvention of the Nebraska Digital Workshop, which has been held annually since 2006. UNL is well-known internationally as a leader in Digital Humanities research via the Center for Digital Research in the Humanities, which is major sponsor of the Forum. The program has also been funded in part by the Nebraska Humanities Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment.

Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities 2015The Third Annual Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities

Details on the 2015 Forum will be available in late 2014. For previous years' events, see below.

Divider

Digital Histories and Digital AuthorshipThe Second Annual Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities

The 2014 Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities was held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln on April 10-11, 2014. A public lecture on Thursday, April 10, "Teaching, Writing, and Researching in the Digital Age," opened the Forum. On Friday, April 11, invited scholars shared their research and led discussion around the Forum's central theme, "Digital Histories and Digital Authorship."

Abstracts and bios for all Forum participants are linked below or you may view the complete list.

Presenters

  • Ruth Mostern: The Rise of the Large Scale and the Future of the Humanities
    Abstract & Bio
  • T. Mills Kelly: Exploring, Remixing, Analyzing: Teaching History with Digital Media
    Abstract & Bio
  • Matthew L. Jockers: Text Mining and its Enemies; or, How Authors Guild Got it Wrong and Fair Use Got Defined Fairly
    Abstract & Bio
  • Vanessa Holden: Tumbling Towards Scholarly Community: A Report on the Queering Slavery Working Group
    Abstract & Bio
  • Ben Schmidt: Visualizing Systems and Imagining Individuals in Historical Data Narratives
    Abstract & Bio
  • Kyle Roberts: Remediating the Library: The Jesuit Libraries and Provenance Project
    Abstract & Bio
  • Amanda Visconti: What if we build a digital edition and everyone shows up? Public Humanities, Participatory Design, and Infinite Ulysses
    Abstract & Bio

Digital Humanities Bootcamp

The UNL History Graduate Student Association and the Department of History sponsored a Digital Humanities Bootcamp in advance of the Forum, April 9-10, 2014. The Bootcamp was intended to help scholars "get started" in digital humanities, and presentations focused on learning the basics and applying digital technologies to humanities research. For more on the Bootcamp, see dhbootcamp.wordpress.com

Divider

Hacking at BooksThe First Annual Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities

The 2013 Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities was held at the Great Plains Art Museum on February 7, 2013. The forum addressed provocative questions about what we knew—and thought we knew—about the humanities and how digital tools could reveal surprising gaps in our understanding.

Speakers Ted Underwood, associate professor of English at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and Tanya Clement, assistant professor in the School of Information at the University of Texas at Austin, spoke about their groundbreaking research, using computational methods to uncover new insights into literature and literary history.

Underwood's talk, titled "How Well Do We Understand Literary History?", challenged the common notion that the literary history of Britain and North America between 1700 and 1900, though thoroughly studied for decades, is well understood. His argument for this emerged from surprising results of his research, which involved searching and analyzing hundreds of thousands of digitized books. Such "data-mining" demonstrates that we still lack a stable understanding of basic literary concepts like "genre" or "poetic diction," or even "literature" itself.

Clement's talk, titled "Sound Seeings, or High Performance Sound Technologies for Access and Scholarship," revealed the emerging digital approaches for research and preservation of audio recordings. Hundreds of thousands of spoken text audio files—including poetry readings, Native American stories, and presidential speeches—remain untapped in archives throughout the world. Clement is part of a team developing original computational tools that help us visualize and understand our sound culture in new ways. Rather than solely fixating on written text, these projects bring tone, rhythm, and other auditory clues to the table, potentially enabling a range of new revelations.

Both lectures offered exciting new research that asked fundamental questions about the humanities to a broad and diverse audience. Though different in their subjects of interest, the talks by Underwood and Clement were united in their discussion about the transformational possibilities inherent in emerging digital tools and methods.