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Editors’ Choice

DHNow is on Winter Break!

Digital Humanities Now will be taking a break until the end of January. On behalf of the DHNow staff, thank you for another great year of publication! A special thanks goes to the generous community of volunteer editors-at-large for dedicating their time and expertise, whether for a single week or throughout the year. We hope you’ll join…

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Editors’ Choice: Teaching Data Visualization to Kids

Think of all the things you learned in elementary school: How to read. How to write. How to count. How to do add, subtract, multiply, and divide. These are all learned skills, things that we are not innately born knowing how to do. Just like these, reading graphs is a skill. We might be taught…

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Editors’ Choice: How 21st Century Tech Can Shed Light On 19th Century Newspapers

The 19th century saw something of an explosion in periodicals. For example, the number of newspapers in Britain alone leapt from 550 in 1846 to more than 2,400 just 60 years later. For humanities scholars, tracking information in such a huge mass of publications poses a daunting challenge. Digital humanities efforts have made some headway…

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Editors’ Choice: Historiography’s Two Voices – Data Infrastructure and History at Scale in the ODNB

On its release in 2004, the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography was called “the greatest book ever” and “a more enthralling read than all the novels ever entered for the Booker Prize put together.”The tabloid The Daily Mail, where these giddy pronouncements appeared, is not known for understatement, but more cautious academic researchers have long…

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Editors’ Choice: Documenting and Digitizing Democracy – The SNCC Digital Gateway

“Learn from the Past, Organize the Future, Make Democracy Work.” This is the mission statement that greets visitors at the SNCC Digital Gateway—a wide-ranging, collaborative website that documents and animates the history of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). Founded in April 1960 under the guidance of veteran activist Ella Baker, SNCC became a leading…

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Editors’ Choice: How do we Model Stereotypes without Stereotyping (Again)?

In a previous post, we explored how using language models and the idea of “perplexity” can allow us to study stereotypes in movie character roles using their dialogue as a basis. We examined a corpus of 750 Hollywood films, released between 1970 and 2014, and tried to model assumptions from the research that people of…

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Editors’ Choice: Digital Dialogue – Movement and Other Translations of Landscape

Gilles Deleuze has written that movement is a translation in space. In this talk I use this distinction as a framework for critical reflection on engaging how past agents marginalized in history have influenced the meaning of space and place. My focus will center on enslaved people who liberated themselves from bondage in the Great…

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Editors’ Choice: Cited Loci of the Aeneid – Searching through JSTOR’s content the classicists’ way

The sheer amount of data contained in JSTOR raises the question of what is the most effective way for scholars to search it. The answer to this question is inevitably going to be discipline-specific as scholars in different fields do have different strategies for retrieving bibliographic information. For students and scholars in Classics, for example,…

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Editors’ Choice: Bridging the Academic-Public Divide Through Podcasts

[The text of my keynote at the Sound Education conference at Harvard on November 2, 2018. This was the first annual conference on educational and academic podcasts, and gathered hundreds of producers of audio and podcast listeners to discuss how podcasting can effectively and engagingly reach diverse audiences interested in a wide range of scholarly…

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Editors’ Choice: The Uncanny Valley and the Ghost in the Machine – a discussion of analogies for thinking about digitized medieval manuscripts

This is a version of a paper I presented at the University of Kansas Digital Humanities Seminar, Co-Sponsored with the Hall Center for the Humanities on September 17, 2018. … So this is great. We’re doing very important work making data about manuscripts available to the world, in ways that make it easy to reuse them,…

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