Dawn Childress digital scholarship : book history : textual studies

SHARP 2016: Translating Networks

Below are the slides and (sort of) reconstructed text of a talk I gave as part of the “Status of Translators” panel at SHARP 2016 in Paris, July 19, 2016. Slides appear at the end.

Today I’m going to share some of the work we doing on our Translating Networks project. I’ll start with a short intro, the genesis and purpose of the project, then talk in more detail about the data work that we are doing and our preliminary research. I’ll conclude with ideas for next steps — some of which are in the planning stages, some perhaps more aspirational.

In The World Republic of Letters, Pascale Casanova argues that the relative importance of a “national” literature on the world literary stage depends not so much on the number of great writers in the language, as on the number of effective mediators from the original language to the target language.[1] This perspective calls for a methodology that considers world literature as a system, a system that is the work of many hands and that supersedes national boundaries. “Many hands” here implies not just a listing of names, but the delineation of a network of translators, original authors, publishers, places, institutions, prizes, and so on.

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CfP: Building Capacity with Care: Graduate Students and DH Work in the Library

Organizers of the DH 2016 workshop, Building Capacity with Care: Graduate Students and DH Work in the Library, have issued a call for participation for the day-long workshop to be held in Kraków, Poland this summer.


From the website: “Libraries have an increasingly prominent role in the production of digital humanities scholarship through centers, programs, initiatives, and more. As leading scholars in the field like Bethany Nowviskie have repeatedly argued, getting graduate students involved in this work is essential for the future of digital work in the academy, and for the career success of 21st century scholars.[1]

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Alternative Infrastructures for Digital Projects

This post contains the slides and (rough) transcript of a presentation given with Andy Rutkowski at the DH Infrastructure Symposium at UCLA on February 26, 2016.

Links for projects and resources mentioned are included at the end of the transcript.

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Digital scholarly editing: a brief tour of practices, projects, and resources.

This is the virtual “handout” for a short introduction to digital scholarly editing for Matt Fisher’s “From the Archive to the Edition in the Digital Age: 21st-Century Textual Criticism” English course.

…the digital “critical representation” of any work “does not accurately (so to speak) mirror its object; it consciously (so to speak) deforms its object… [opening] the doors of perception toward new opportunities and points of view.” –Jerome McGann (Radiant Textuality)

Editorial rationales

Let’s first consider a few historical approaches to scholarly editing:

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Editorial Matters: Data, Truth, and Interpretation in the Archives

This is a paper given at the Digital Antiquarian Conference & Workshop in response to the Editorial Matters panel on May 29, 2015 in Worcester, MA.

True to the title of our panel “Editorial Matters,” the presenters have explored some of the thornier issues of editorial work, both practical and philosophical. While the papers discuss three very different editorial projects, each with its own set of questions and theoretical approaches, there emerged for me three distinct themes throughout the papers — two of which I’ve been thinking about for some time; the third, a topic I’m now mulling over since reading the papers. For my response, I’d like to situate these themes in a broader context — one where I’m considering the “editorial matters” of digital work more generally, to include not just the discrete digital projects that belong to the domain of the digital humanities or scholarly editions, but the digital collections, databases, text corpora, and other large scale projects of cultural institutions as well. I would argue that these three themes are central to and should actively inform the work of libraries, cultural heritage centers, and other keepers of the record, namely, how we editorialize and expose the work of digital libraries, digital texts, and other digital projects, and how this work can or should support the editorial AND explorative work of scholars.

To introduce the first (and most obvious) theme, I’ll begin with a story — a librarian, archivist, digital library developer, and historian walk into a bar [actually a Napa-esque farm-to-table restaurant where they enjoyed a lovely Malbec]… What did they talk about while sharing their Malbec? — why, archives and data, of course. More specifically, text and document as data and mark-up as data modeling.

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