[Humanist] 28.728 evidence of value

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Fri Feb 13 08:40:59 CET 2015


                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 28, No. 728.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                       www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

  [1]   From:    Paul Fishwick <metaphorz at gmail.com>                       (61)
        Subject: Re:  28.727 evidence of value?

  [2]   From:    Gabriel Egan <mail at gabrielegan.com>                       (55)
        Subject: Re:  28.727 evidence of value?

  [3]   From:    Keri Thomas <kerilthomas at gmail.com>                       (16)
        Subject: Evidence of value and related anxieties


--[1]------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2015 08:15:18 -0600
        From: Paul Fishwick <metaphorz at gmail.com>
        Subject: Re:  28.727 evidence of value?
        In-Reply-To: <20150212120713.E7AF79F8 at digitalhumanities.org>


Dear Willard:

   I am unqualified to have an adequate handle on mainstream scholarship in the
humanities. However, from what I have read within the digital humanities (DH), a key 
point of argument is that the word “scholarship” within the humanities is evolving.
And so on to the question, “has the digital humanities made any difference at
all to mainstream scholarship?” I don’t know, but perhaps digital humanities is
doing something more dramatic, and more vital, which is to redefine and extend
the very nature of scholarship. Crafting a humanistically-sensitive, digitally-enabled 
human interface, which is new, and writing about it is a form of scholarship. That is
what I meant by my recent blog post regarding scholarship in engineering. Isn’t that what 
the debate is  about or have I missed the boat? Perhaps “mainstream scholarship" is 
undergoing an evolutionary shift in the humanities? Some of the criticisms against
DH falter because they employ the wrong metric, assuming that scholarship is limited
to one type of discourse.
p

On Feb 12, 2015, at 6:07 AM, Humanist Discussion Group <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk> wrote:

> 
>                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 28, No. 727.
>            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
>                       www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist
>                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org
> 
> 
> 
>        Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2015 11:48:40 +0000
>        From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
>        Subject: evidence of value and related anxieties
> 
> A few years ago, at least in the UK, an effort was made -- not the first 
> of them -- to assess whether the application of digital methods had 
> produced "evidence of value". Relatively recently I have run across this 
> question in another form, specifically addressing application to 
> literary studies: has digital humanities made any difference at all to 
> mainstream scholarship?
> 
> I am collecting expressions of such anxieties from the first decade of 
> this century to the present and would be very grateful for any pointers, 
> suggestions and comments. These expressions do not have to be 
> intelligent or even argued. My interest is in the fact that they occur 
> and when they occur.
> 
> Many thanks.
> 
> Yours,
> WM
> -- 
> Willard McCarty (www.mccarty.org.uk/), Professor, Department of Digital
> Humanities, King's College London, and Digital Humanities Research
> Group, University of Western Sydney


Paul Fishwick, PhD
Chair, ACM SIGSIM
Distinguished University Chair of Arts & Technology 
   and Professor of Computer Science
Director, Creative Automata Laboratory
The University of Texas at Dallas
Arts & Technology
800 West Campbell Road, AT10
Richardson, TX 75080-3021
Home: utdallas.edu/atec/fishwick
Blog: creative-automata.com



--[2]------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2015 14:40:00 +0000
        From: Gabriel Egan <mail at gabrielegan.com>
        Subject: Re:  28.727 evidence of value?
        In-Reply-To: <20150212120713.E7AF79F8 at digitalhumanities.org>


Dear Willard McCarty

The obvious example of evidence of value that occurs to me is the recent
reshaping of the Shakespeare canon by the inclusion of new plays we didn't
know were his and the realization that plays that the First Folio says are
solely his are in fact collaborations.

These achievements are, in almost every case, the results of digital
humanities scholarship. Mainstream Shakepeare studies is certainly taking
notice. Almost no-one who's up-to-date now writes literary criticism of
Titus Andronicus, Timon of Athens, 1 Henry 6, Pericles, The Two Noble
Kinsmen, or Henry 8 on the assumption that they can attribute what is in
those plays to Shakespeare alone. That is, they either check who wrote which
bit, or they at least attribute the agency to "Shakespeare and Fletcher" or
"Shakespeare and Peele" and so on.

If they really know what they're talking about, they take the same care
regarding 2 Henry 6, 3 Henry 6, Macbeth, Measure for Measure, The Spanish
Tragedy, and Arden of Faversham too.

Regards

Gabriel Egan
Centre for Textual Studies
De Montfort University


_________________________________________________________
Professor Gabriel Egan, De Montfort University. www.gabrielegan.com
Director of the Centre for Textual Studies http://cts.dmu.ac.uk
National Teaching Fellow 2014 http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/ntfs




--[3]------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2015 16:32:02 +0000
        From: Keri Thomas <kerilthomas at gmail.com>
        Subject: Evidence of value and related anxieties
        In-Reply-To: <20150212120713.E7AF79F8 at digitalhumanities.org>


Hi Willard,

I am currently writing up my thesis on a similar issue - notions of
cultural value and capital, and whether they have had an impact on the use
of digitised artefacts. I think this notion of value and most particularly,
the value of the digital humanities in scholarship, is still prevalent and
I think, generally, there is a strong whiff of digitisation as a means to
secure funding, and to subscribe to Government notions of value -
digitisation as appeasement. Most of the academics I spoke to had used
digital artefacts, however, and most of them acknowledged that they had had
a real impact on their research. But it was more as a tool to make the
process faster, and most of them relied upon the physical artefact
ultimately, as they felt it gave their work more credence. Very few said
they would cite a digitised artefact.

I'm not sure that answers your question, but I hope it raises some comments!

Regards,
Keri Thomas





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