[Humanist] 23.3 events: TEI; digital American lit; food and medicine

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Thu May 7 10:42:33 CEST 2009

                  Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 23, No. 3.
         Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

  [1]   From:    Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>          (64)
        Subject: Amanda Gailey at the London Seminar in Digital Text and
                Scholarship,21 May

  [2]   From:    James Cummings <James.Cummings at oucs.ox.ac.uk>             (47)
        Subject: TEI at Oxford Summer School  2009 -- now open for bookings!

  [3]   From:    "Prof. Hal Cook" <fgcook at btinternet.com>                  (11)
        Subject: SYMPOSIUM: 'Food and Medicine 1650-1820', Wellcome Trust
                Centre London,22 May 2009

        Date: Wed, 06 May 2009 09:24:10 +0100
        From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
        Subject: Amanda Gailey at the London Seminar in Digital Text and Scholarship, 21 May

London Seminar in Digital Text and Scholarship
Thursday, 21 May 2009, 17.30-19.30
Room 275, Stewart House, 32 Russell Square, London WC1B 5DN

Amanda Gailey (Georgia, U.S.), 'Digital American Literature: Some 
Problems and Prospects'

In this paper I will discuss obstacles to the full integration of 
digital resources for American literature into research and the classroom.

First is the strange relationship between the selective canon of print 
literature and the body of texts digitized by digital libraries and 
digital scholarly editions. On the one hand, digital scholarly editions 
in American literature tend to focus conservatively on highly canonical 
authors (such as Whitman and Dickinson), and foreground compositional 
histories by displaying manuscript drafts, applying markup that 
highlights authorial process, etc. This approach asserts an 
author-centered view of literature and has resulted in the digitization 
of minutiae by a few great authors while the major works of slightly 
less canonical authors (such as Poe) have been altogether neglected.

Digital libraries, on the other hand, often aim to digitize large 
numbers of texts that are difficult to access, such as early American 
newspapers or out-of-print books. While these efforts uncover invaluable 
information and provide new insight into the history of American 
literature, they also generally contribute a body of dross: texts that 
individually are rarely important to research or teaching. The corpus of 
digitized American literature is emerging, then, as a strange hodgepodge 
of highly canonical writing, minutiae discarded by geniuses, and scads 
of obscure texts that have been and will continue to be fairly 
unimportant to the literary scholar and teacher.

The second obstacle I will discuss is how XML-based digital libraries 
and editions are not yet poised to accommodate criticism and 
interpretation, which remains a predominantly print-based commodity. The 
general inability of XML to handle conflicting claims about a text 
gracefully, together with markup schemes concerned more with literary 
structures than with interpretive claims, encourages projects to adopt 
an editorial approach that, like Muzak, is as unlikely to offend as it 
is to enthrall. If the technology did not rule out the inclusion of 
conflicting interests in the text, though, contestable tagging would not 
severely limit the usability of the document and might seem a more 
viable possibility for projects directed by literary scholars.

Throughout, I will address how these issues are unfolding in a project I 
co-edit, "Race and Children's Literature of the Gilded Age", which 
specifically addresses texts that have drifted from the canon (such as 
Joel Chandler Harris's Uncle Remus tales), and how we have tried to 
develop editorial strategies that allow for more contentious claims 
about the texts.

Amanda Gailey (PhD, University of Nebraska, 2006) is assistant professor 
of English at the University of Georgia, where she teaches humanities 
computing and American literature. She has worked on the Walt Whitman 
Archive and the Spenser Archive, and currently co-edits Race and 
Children's Literature of the Gilded Age, a digital archive that examines 
how adults wanted children to think about race during Reconstruction in 
the US. Her publications include essays in The Walt Whitman Quarterly 
Review, The Emily Dickinson Journal, and the forthcoming American 
Literature Scholar in the Digital Age. She is working on a book that 
examines how print and digital editing have helped shape the canon of 
19th century American literature.

All are welcome. Refreshments provided.


Willard McCarty, Professor of Humanities Computing,
King's College London, staff.cch.kcl.ac.uk/~wmccarty/;
Editor, Humanist, www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist;
Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, www.isr-journal.org.

        Date: Wed, 06 May 2009 12:16:56 +0100
        From: James Cummings <James.Cummings at oucs.ox.ac.uk>
        Subject: TEI at Oxford Summer School  2009 -- now open for bookings!

TEI at Oxford Summer School  2009 -- now open for bookings!

The TEI at Oxford team is pleased to announce that we are now taking 
bookings for our annual summer school.

Dates: Monday 20 July - Friday 24 July
Venue: Oxford University Computing Services

Full information and online booking: 

This five-day course combines in-depth coverage of the latest version of 
the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) Guidelines for the encoding of 
digital text with hands-on practical exercises in their application. If 
you are a project manager, research assistant, or encoder working on any 
kind of project concerned with the creation or management of digital 
text, this course is for you.

You should be generally computer literate (web, email, word-processors) 
for this course. You may already be broadly familiar with the idea of 
textual editing, perhaps (but not necessarily) with some experience of 
producing HTML web pages, or of traditional scholarly editing. You 
should be enthusiastic about the possibilities offered by digital 
technologies and keen to learn more. You should be prepared to get your 
hands dirty at the keyboard and you should not be afraid of a little 
technical jargon.

At the end of the course we hope to have given you:

   1. a good grounding in the theoretical issues underlying the use of
      text markup, XML in particular;
   2. an understanding of the purpose and principles of the Text
      Encoding Initiative;
   3. a survey of the full range of modules constituting the TEI's
      current Recommendations;
   4. experience of how the TEI scheme can be customized for particular
      applications, and internationalized for different languages.
   5. an introduction to some of the tools and methods in which TEI
      documents are published and processed

Using OUCS' excellent teaching facilities, we will also provide you with 
practical experience in:

    * using online tools to build, verify, and document a TEI-conformant
    * using XML editing software to
          o create new encoded texts
          o standardize existing digital texts
    * using a variety of web-based and desktop tools to display and
      analyse TEI documents

The course will be taught by the TEI at Oxford team: Lou Burnard, James 
Cummings, and Sebastian Rahtz, with the assistance of other invited TEI 

Dr James Cummings, Research Technologies Service, University of Oxford
James dot Cummings at oucs dot ox dot ac dot uk

        Date: Thu, 7 May 2009 07:50:22 +0100
        From: "Prof. Hal Cook" <fgcook at btinternet.com>
        Subject: SYMPOSIUM: 'Food and Medicine 1650-1820', Wellcome Trust Centre London, 22 May 2009

'Food and Medicine 1650-1820'

Friday 22 May 2009 from 1020
The Wellcome Building, 183 Euston Road, London NW1 2BE (Fifth Floor) UK

Registration required. To download the programme and registration form in
pdf format, please click here:


For information on our other events, please see:

Posted by Prof. Hal Cook, Director, Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of
Medicine at UCL, h.cook at ucl.ac.uk

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