Here I shall briefly open to you my ongoing deliberations on why I think a blog can be a worthwhile digital instrument in academic research, without casting aside possible negative outcomes.
First, why going public? The whole debate on the place of the internet, it seems, has just entered a new phase of hot confrontations between different global actors after the first decade of the 21st century. Just to mention some of the most important ones that come to my mind: the questioning of the dominating power of huge enterprises and corporations , private and public surveillance issues, terrorism, the struggle for and against anonymity, information overload. And where does academia fit into this big and dynamic picture? Up to now, it has been my opinion that it could be all about testing new grounds for one’s own project when (at least) individual research is involved. But, what’s about the participation of others? Do I communicate the same way online, I am usually up to when entering the class room, the library or having a coffee with fellow students&researchers? What opportunities for collective work and other forms of joint efforts could there be? The Digital Humanities and Open Access movements hold a big promise for reevaluating the routines we are used to learn and incorporate in the unfolding of each established curriculum. As I am studying history, I feel the need to pay much more attention to the Digital Humanities and the potential shifts in the practice and in the identity of historians the movement calls for. In fact, the main reason for this blog might be this. It’s both: a personal search for new possibilities of and the critical reflections on the limitations of digital research (the “what is lost” question) and communication. The blog will aid me in keeping track of my findings and ideas on my research topic. I hope it might help me to share items and offer a means of exchange with readers, participants in the project and the great universe of sites, blogs, users and communities that come together in the internet. To promote, to collect data and information, to reflect on the whole process, to involve others.
My first glance at the field is basically nurtured by the following contributions. Feel free to join me in this search: check out the sites and let me know of the impressions/contributions you might want to share! What approaches do you have in mind?
- Manifesto for the Digital Humanities, Marin Dacos, 2011.
- European Association for Digital Humanities (EADH).
- Journal of Digital Humanities (JDH).
- Digital Humanities Quarterly (DHQ).
- Writing History in the Digital Age, Jack Dougherty and Kristen Nawrotzki (eds.), 2012.
- hackingtheacademy, 2010.
- Digital Humanities Now.
- Global Perspectives on Digital History.
- BMGN – Low Countries Historical Review, Volume 128-4 (2013).
You may also watch out for my posts where I try to reflect on possible implications for my research project.