[Humanist] 22.338 events: Medieval and Early Modern Material Culture

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Wed Nov 19 08:58:11 CET 2008

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 22, No. 338.
         Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

        Date: Tue, 18 Nov 2008 20:32:24 -0600
        From: Brent Nelson <brent.nelson at usask.ca>
        Subject: CFP: Digitizing Medieval and Early Modern Material Culture

Call for Papers: Digitizing Medieval and Early Modern Material Culture

Editors Brent Nelson (University of Saskatchewan) and Melissa Terras 
(University College London) invite submissions for a collection of 
essays on "Digitizing Medieval and Early Modern Material Culture" to be 
published in the New Technologies in Medieval and Renaissance Studies 
Series edited by Ray Siemens and William Bowen.

This collection of essays will build on the accomplishments of recent 
scholarship on materiality by bringing together innovative research on 
the theory and praxis of digitizing material cultures from roughly 500 
A.D. to 1700 A.D. Scholars of the medieval and early modern periods have 
begun to pay more attention to the material world not only as a means of 
cultural experience, but also as a shaping influence upon culture and 
society, looking at the world of material objects as both an area of 
study and a rich source of evidence for interpreting the past. Digital 
media enable new ways of evoking, representing, recovering, and 
simulating these materials in non-traditional, non-textual (or 
para-textual) ways and present new possibilities for recuperating and 
accumulating material from across vast distances and time, enabling both 
preservation and comparative analysis that is otherwise impossible or 
impractical. Digital mediation also poses practical and theoretical 
challenges, both logistical (such as gaining access to materials) and 
intellectual (for example, the relationship between text and object). 
This volume of essays will promote the deployment of digital 
technologies to the study of material culture by bringing together 
expertise garnered from complete and current digital projects, while 
looking forward to new possibilities for digital applications; it will 
both take stock of the current state of theory and practice and advance 
new developments in digitization of material culture. The editors 
welcome submissions from all disciplines on any research that addresses 
the use of digital means for representing and investigating material 
culture as expressed in such diverse areas as:

� travelers' accounts, navigational charts and cartography
� collections and inventories
� numismatics, antiquarianism and early archaeology
� theatre and staging (props, costumes, stages, theatres)
� the visual arts of drawing, painting, sculpture, print making, and 
� model making
� paper making and book printing, production, and binding
� manuscripts, emblems, and illustrations
� palimpsests and three-dimensional writing
� instruments (magic, alchemical, and scientific)
� arts and crafts
� the anatomical and cultural body

We welcome approaches that are practical and/or theoretical, general in 
application or particular and project-based. Submissions should present 
fresh advances in methodologies and applications of digital 
technologies, including but not limited to:

� XML and databases and computational interpretation
� three-dimensional computer modeling, Second Life and virtual worlds
� virtual research environments
� mapping technology
� image capture, processing, and interpretation
� 3-D laser scanning, synchrotron, or X-ray imaging and analysis
� artificial intelligence, process modeling, and knowledge representation

Papers might address such topics and issues as:

� the value of inter-disciplinarity (as between technical and humanist 
� relationships between image and object; object and text; text and image
� the metadata of material culture
� curatorial and archival practice
� mediating the material object and its textual representations
� imaging and data gathering (databases and textbases)
� the relationship between the abstract and the material text
� haptic, visual, and auditory simulation
� tools and techniques for paleographic analysis

Enquiries and proposals should be sent to brent.nelson[at]usask.ca by 10 
January 2009. Complete essays of 5,000-6,000 words in length will be due 
on 1 May 2009.

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