Digital Opportunities September 2018


Digital Scholarship Opportunities

This is a new feature of the DLA—sent out by email roughly every other month—publicizing a selection of grant, fellowship, conference, workshop, panel, and other opportunities in the digital liberal arts. It is not all-inclusive, so feel free to send any CFPs or announcements to so that we can include them in a future email or on the DLA website. —Michael Kramer, Acting Director, DLA/Assistant Professor of the Practice, Digital History

Conference: Sound Education, Harvard Divinity School, Nov 1-3, 2018

From the conference website: Every day, millions of listeners listen to podcasts and radio programs to teach themselves about the humanities, sciences, and other academic topics, selecting the programs and hosts that suit their learning styles. From professionals in studios to hobbyists in bedroom closets; from tenured academics to energetic young enthusiasts, producers of educational audio are a diverse set. But they share a common goal – distilling complex information into lectures, conversations and interviews that are free and accessible to everyone in the world. Sound Education is a three-day event at Harvard University for educational and academic podcasters and radio hosts, and their listeners. 

CFP: HASTAC 2019: “Decolonizing Technologies, Reprogramming Education,” 16-18 May 2019

On 16-18 May 2019, the Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology Alliance and Collaboratory (HASTAC), in partnership with the Institute for Critical Indigenous Studies at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and the Department of English at the University of Victoria (UVic), will be guests on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓-speaking Musqueam (xʷməθkʷəy̓əm) people, facilitating a conference about decolonizing technologies and reprogramming education.

The conference will hold up and support Indigenous scholars and knowledges, centering work by Indigenous women and women of colour. It will engage how technologies are, can be, and have been decolonized. How, for instance, are extraction technologies repurposed for resurgence? Or, echoing Ellen Cushman, how do we decolonize digital archives? Equally important, how do decolonial and anti-colonial practices shape technologies and education? How, following Kimberlé Crenshaw, are such practices intersectional? How do they correspond with what Grace Dillon calls Indigenous Futurisms? And how do they foster what Eve Tuck and Wayne Yang describe as an ethic of incommensurability, unsettling not only assumptions of innocence but also discourses of reconciliation?

Deadline for proposals is Monday 15 October 2018.

Conference website (available in English, French, and Spanish).

CFP: Current Research in Digital History 2019, Mar 9, 2019

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media invites submissions for the second annual Current Research in Digital History conference. Submissions should offer historical arguments and interpretations rather than showcase digital projects. The format of short presentations provides an opportunity to make arguments on the basis of ongoing research in larger projects. Graduate students are encouraged to submit proposals. Some travel funding for presenters is available. Presentations will be peer-reviewed and published in an online publication that accommodates dynamic visualizations and narrative.

Submissions due: September 28, 2018. E-mail submissions as a PDF or URL to Questions may be sent to the same address.

Format: Each presentation will be 10 minutes in length. Proposals must include the full text (no more than 2000 words) and accompanying visualizations or websites to be presented. Papers can include multiple authors. Submissions can be either a single presentation or a session of two presentations. Proposals may suggest a commentator but are not obliged to.

The conference will feature sessions sponsored by the African American Intellectual History Society and the Colored Conventions Project. Special consideration will be given to other papers on Black digital history related to the sponsored sessions.

How papers will be selected: The primary criterion by which these presentations and panels will be judged is whether they advance historical argumentation. In other words, while digital methods will be common to all the presentations, we will select presentations that show how those methods have advanced specific interpretations of history.

Accepted proposals will be returned with reviews provided by the program committee on December 14, 2018. Revised versions of accepted papers will be due to the session commentator by February 1, 2019. Commentators will provide an additional review at the conference on March 9, 2019. A final revised version of the paper for publication will be due on May 24, 2019. Travel funding: Four $200 stipends are available to support the participation of presenters who have to travel to the event. Please indicate on your submission if you wish to be considered for a stipend.

CFP: Association for Computers and the Humanities (ACH) Conference, Jul 23-26, 2019

Deadline: November 10, 2018 
Submit a proposal: inaugural Association for Computers and the Humanities (ACH) conference will take place in Pittsburgh, PA, July 23-26, 2019 at the Pittsburgh Marriott City Center.Conference DescriptionACH is the United States-based constituent organization in the Alliance for Digital Humanities Organizations (ADHO). The ACH 2019 conference, in partnership with Keystone DH, provides a forum for conversations on an expansive definition of digital humanities in a broad array of subject areas, methods, and communities of practice.

ACH recognizes that this work is inherently and inextricably sociopolitical, and thus additionally, but not exclusively, welcomes scholarship that emphasizes social justice through the use of computers and related technologies in the study of humanistic subjects.

Areas of engagement include but are not limited to:

Computational and digital approaches to research and pedagogy;
Digital media, art, literature, history, music, film, and games;
Digital librarianship;
Digital humanities tools and infrastructures;
Humanistic research on digital objects and cultures;
Knowledge infrastructures;
Physical computing;
Resource creation, curation, and engagement;
Use of digital technologies to write, publish, and review scholarship.
We particularly invite proposals on anti-racist, queer, postcolonial and decolonial, indigenous, Black studies, cultural and critical ethnic studies, and intersectional feminist interventions in digital studies.

As an organization committed to cross-disciplinary engagement, we welcome interdisciplinary proposals. We also are especially interested in receiving proposals from participants with a range of expertise and from a variety of roles, including alt-ac positions, employment outside of higher education, and graduate students. We further invite proposals from participants who are newcomers to digital humanities.  

Conference Proposals

We encourage those proposing sessions to consider formats beyond the traditional 20-minute paper panels, such as roundtables, multi-speaker panels, digital posters, lightning talks, installations, and performances. When proposing a session, we ask that you describe your session type and indicate a preferred time length for the session. Suggestions are below, but we encourage proposers to move beyond them and to think creatively about other possibilities.

Proposals should be between 250-500 words in length and should describe the proposed topic, requested time length, participants, and audience for the session, and should include five keywords. We suggest 250-word proposals for individual submissions and 500-word proposals for multi-speaker submissions. While proposals should be clearly linked to existing scholarly debates, formal citations are not required except for direct quotation. Submissions will be evaluated using double-blind peer review, so please omit identifying information, including author name and affiliation, in the proposal.

While our CFP has been released in English, Spanish, and French, we welcome proposals for contributions in other languages. Proposals will be reviewed in the language of submission. Regardless of the language of your proposal, please ensure that your five keywords are in English to facilitate program scheduling.

Proposals will be submitted using ConfTool: Please create a new account to submit your proposal.

Please note that for the purposes of scheduling, we may suggest an alternative length or collaboration between related proposals. While there is no limit on number of submissions, the committee will not normally schedule more than two presentations from one primary author.

Suggested Proposal Types and Duration

The proposal types and durations below are suggestions. We eagerly welcome alternatives.

Workshops (3 hours to full-day): In-depth hands-on sessions led by presenters with expertise, technical or otherwise, in an emerging topic or methodology of broad interest to the ACH community.

Panels (1 hour): Engaging sessions that facilitate dialogue between panelists and across panel and audience, highlighting connections between projects, methods, or themes.

Papers (10-20 minutes): Dynamic presentations that share experiments, works in progress, or sustained reflections and outcomes of more complete projects while engaging a range of participants and fostering connections and dialogue.

Roundtables (1 hour): Sessions for which speakers provide brief interventions or framing on a set of issues, keywords, methods, and/or themes, followed by open discussion among speakers and the audience.

Lightning Talks (5 minutes): Highly-focused presentations that succinctly introduce a topic, method, tool, project, or work-in-progress to catalyze ideas and foster follow-up discussion.

Posters (poster session): Poster proposals present work on any relevant topic or offer project tool, and software demonstrations in any stage of development.

Installations and Performances (1 hour to ongoing throughout conference): Art work, creative data visualizations, performances, demonstrations, and other critical interventions that engage conference issues, methods and themes.

Proposal Review and Notification

ACH 2019 submissions will undergo double-blind peer review. Please remove all identifying information from your proposal submission including author name and affiliation. Presenters will be notified of acceptance by February 18, 2019.

Code of Conduct

ACH is dedicated to creating a safe, respectful, and collegial conference environment for the benefit of everyone who attends and for the advancement of research and scholarship in fields supported by ACH. The ACH 2019 conference will be governed by the ADHO Conference Code of Conduct ( Please review the Code of Conduct and indicate your willingness to observe it when signing up for your ConfTool account. 


ACH strives to ensure that the conference is accessible for all participants. We will provide guidelines for accessibility of sessions to all accepted participants. Gender-neutral bathrooms will be available for attendees, and we are working to secure a lactation room and childcare services. More information, along with a request for information about participant needs, will be circulated in early 2019. 

Travel and Accommodations

ACH 2019 will take place at the Pittsburgh Marriott City Center, located in downtown Pittsburgh. We are working to secure dormitory housing for the conference as well. The closest airport is Pittsburgh International Airport. 

Contact Information

For questions and concerns about the CFP, conference program, submissions, Code of Conduct, or accessibility, please contact the program committee co-chairs: Roopika Risam ( and Patrick Juola ( 

If you are interested in translating this call for proposals into Portuguese, German, Italian, or another language, please contact the co-chairs.

Program Committee

Co-chair: Roopika Risam, Salem State University
Co-chair: Patrick Juola, Duquesne University
Emily Esten, Kennedy Institute
Sylvia Fernández, University of Houston
Heather Froehlich, Penn State University
Anna Kijas, Boston College
Nabil Kashyap, Swarthmore College 
Thomas Padilla, UNLV 

Steering Committee

Kathleen Fitzpatrick, Michigan State University
Matthew K. Gold, CUNY Graduate Center
Jennifer Guiliano, IUPUI
Patrick Juola, Duquesne University
Alison Langmead, University of Pittsburgh
Jessica Otis, George Mason University 
Gesina Phillips, Duquesne University
Roopika Risam, Salem State University
Scott B. Weingart, Carnegie Mellon University

CFP: The International Journal for Digital Art History, 30 Sep 2018

The International Journal for Digital Art History is currently seeking submissions for its fourth issue. Digital Art History is often described as a methodological addition to Art History. Moreover, it includes a profound transformation of its institutional framework: server rooms replaced the slide libraries as the former center of art historical departments, museums are concerned with digitizing their collections and making them accessible via virtual exhibitions, and conservators facing challenges pre­ serving digital art with its soft­ and hardware.

The transition from analog to digital pictorial transcription has transformed art history and its archives in profound and unexpected ways. The objects of our study, once physically circumscribed by the walls of the slide library, are now widely available. The advent of image retrieval platforms like ArtStor and Google Image Search, not to mention countless muse­ um databases, present new challenges and opportunities for cataloguing and visualizing data. The photographic practices of museum visitors have likewise been transformed by the integration of digital photography, cellular phones, and social media. Additionally, art historical publishing and pedagogy continue to be mostly constrained (in the English­ speaking world) by antiquarian protocols governing copyright and image clearance.

For the upcoming issue of the DAH­Journal we ask for contributions on the following topics:

 –How are analog institutions transforming and which digital tools steer this transformation? What practices persist, which one are eliminated?

–What nascent digital methodologies do museums and archives utilize to engage visitors, organize metadata, and document collections?

–How might digital publishing, art making, and experimentation challenge and change art­-historical research?

– What are digital opportunities to develop and document archives of underrepresented, neglected, or ephemeral traditions of image­making?

The fourth issue’s featured author will be Johanna Drucker, who is currently the Martin and Bernard Breslauer Professor in the Department of Information Studies at the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA.

We welcome articles from art historians, curators, conservators, artists, information scientists, and authors from other related disciplines who are concerned with questions around this topic. To send in articles, please register first at http:// dah­ and then submit articles by September 30, 2018 (6,000 words max.). For more information please visit “Information for Authors” on our website.

CFP: Triple Canopy’s 2018 Call for Proposals

The magazine invites proposals for new work to be developed by artists and writers in collaboration with Triple Canopy’s editors for inclusion in an upcoming issue devoted to the role of emerging technologies in fostering, reconfiguring, and eroding associations between people, which will launch in early 2019. For this year’s call for proposals, we’re only seeking works of fiction and poetry to be published online; that said, we’re open to hybrid genres, combinations of text and visual media or audio recordings, stories that are generated by or linked to events to be staged by the author, etc. (Unfortunately, we’re not able to consider proposals for works to be written in a language other than English or for translations.)

Triple Canopy’s twenty-sixth issue will assess how digital technologies, which once promised to connect and democratize the world, have instead provided the means to foster division, sow confusion, privatize communication, and enhance control. The issue will consider how the migration of so many cultural and political activities to proprietary online platforms, and the sudden dominance of novel forms of reading, viewing, and socializing, is contributing to the corrosion of democracies. At the same time, the issue will reflect on the bonds that we might form as a result of—and in response to—the circulation and consumption of selves as data (and vice versa).

While the issue will include artworks, essays, and public programs, in this call we invite authors of fiction and poetry to consider the following questions: How might we convey the tension between our favored forms of communication and the thoughts, experiences, and relationships that cannot so easily be captured and quantified? How might we represent ourselves if to do so makes us all the more legible to systems of surveillance and oppression? How might something like public opinion be expressed in the face of data-crunching operations that probe behavior, decipher biology, and manipulate impulses? How might we recognize ourselves in relation to the sentient software that we expect to serve, entertain, record, and know us?

To apply:

Triple Canopy is looking for writers with coherent proposals for projects that can be realized in one year or less. While we are open to ideas that can be evaluated in relation to completed works, we will prioritize proposals that are accompanied by samples of the writing in progress. We are, as ever, in search of work that makes innovative, persuasive use of its own form and medium. While past publication or experience is not a prerequisite, successful applicants will demonstrate fluency in the genres in which they are writing. We appreciate work that takes into account current discussions and debates but is not bound by them, work that is carefully crafted but not fixated on form. While there is no limit on the length of proposed projects, keep in mind that we rarely publish works that contain more than eight thousand words.

Commission recipients receive:

* Eight to twelve months of artistic, editorial, and technical support
* An honorarium of $2,000
* The possibility of using Triple Canopy’s Manhattan office and venue for an event devoted or related to the work
* The possibility of publishing a version of—or conversation about—the work on Triple Canopy’s forthcoming podcast
* Archiving of materials and long-term maintenance of the project by Triple Canopy in partnership with New York University’s Fales Library and Special Collections
Read the complete application guidelines

Apply for free via the online form by October 26, 2018, at 11:59 EDT.



2018-2019 DLA Fellows

We are delighted to introduce our 2018-2019 DLA Fellows.

Will Nash, American Studies/English and American Literatures—One Cry, Many Voices: The Role of Scrapbooks in the Struggle to End American Chattel Slavery

Abolitionist scrapbooks compiled in the United States in the first half of the nineteenth century have been underappreciated and under-analyzed by scholars. Although fighting the anti-slavery battle necessitated overt, often public, action and frequently demanded the collaborative creation of a collective voice to speak against the peculiar institution, the impetus for participation in the struggle necessarily began privately and internally for each individual. If one reads the scrapbooks as illuminating both the subject matter and the maker, then collecting individual maker’s takes on the central moral and political struggle of the mid-nineteenth century provides scholars with an invaluable window of insight into how the struggle arose and how it shaped and was shaped by the individuals, famous and unknown, who embodied and enacted that resistance. It also firmly establishes a connection between the artifacts and our present cultural moment. If, as historian Ira Berlin has asserted, “slavery has become a language, a way to talk about race, in a society in which blacks and whites hardly talk to each other at all,” then exploring the language of the struggle against slavery, and most particularly the language of a collaborative movement like the abolitionist struggle, provides us with a model for thinking about how to address and possibly overcome the inherent tensions and violence that continue to plague America’s racial realities. Within the language of resistance to American chattel slavery, the abolitionist scrapbook stands as a monument both to what an individual can contribute to the struggle and how the preservation and dissemination of his or her insights can help lay a foundation upon which groups of resisters can build. As hybrid texts, the scrapbooks are also ideal candidates for digital humanities work, beginning with the goal of creating a fully-realized, searchable digital edition of the scrapbooks accessible electronically to scholars and teachers who might find the resources useful.

Natalie Eppelsheimer, German—Escape Routes and Refugee Narratives

This project moves from studies of people fleeing Nazi-occupied Europe between 1933 and 1945 to refugee experiences more broadly. It widens the perspective and timeframe by examining escape routes taken by current refugees seeking to reach, rather than escape, Germany. The project will create geospatial visualizations and timelines of refugee stories, use digital tools for text analysis, and harness computational and multimedia tactics to connect WWII-era refugee narratives to a broader geographic and historical context ranging from the writings of German Jewish refugees depicting their lives in British East African colonies to contemporary refugee crises in Europe.

Brigitte Humbert, French—La Grammaire Française: Interactive French Grammar Web Site 

This project draws upon materials developed over a career teaching French at Middlebury to build an interactive French grammar website in French with rules, exercises, and activities (songs or games) that are both informative and fun. Explanations of grammar rules are downloadable for safekeeping and further use, as well as readable directly on the site for those who wish to check and confirm a grammar point. Exercises and activities can be downloaded as well, but also done directly on the website with instant feedback. Finally, the site will provide links to more complex French grammar sites for those who wish to study a grammar point more in depth or do further practice.

Jason Mittell, Film and Media Culture/American Studies/Senior Adviser to the DLA—The Characteristics and Characterization of Breaking Bad: A Video Book 

This multimedia project will explore the landmark American television series Breaking Bad (2008–13) via the emerging format of videographic criticism, producing a collection of open access video essays interpreting the particular modes of characterization within the series and arguing for the significance of character as an aspect of media storytelling. The resulting “video book” will be intellectually significant in three primary ways: adding to our theoretical and analytical understanding of characterization in moving image media, filling gaps in the existing literature; serving as one of the first extended single- authored studies of one of the most popular, acclaimed and influential contemporary television series; and breaking new ground on how videographic criticism engages with television, establishing a new format of the video book focused on a television series. Given the popularity of the series and the accessibility of and high interest in the video essay format, this video book should make a strong impact on both the academic field of media studies and general audience understanding of Breaking Bad and videographic criticism. Check out a draft of Chapter One, What’s Walt Thinking? Mind Reading & Serialized Memory in Breaking Bad.

Glitching History

Acting Director of the DLA Michael Kramer has a new essay in the inaugural issue of Current Research in Digital History, published by the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University. The essay, “Glitching History: Using Image Deformance to Rethink Agency and Authenticity in the 1960s American Folk Music Revival,” focuses on the surprising ways in which file glitching can aid in historical inquiry. It draws upon Kramer’s current research into the folk music movement, which includes a digital project about folk music on the West Coast as well as a book project about technology and tradition in the folk music movement. Kramer will be teaching his digital methods seminar, Digitizing Folk Music History, with students at Middlebury in Spring 2019.

Student Nathan Anderson’s 2013 glitch experiment with Kelly Hart’s 1964 photograph of “Mississippi” John Hurt, Sam Hinton, and Arthel “Doc” Watson at the Berkeley Folk Music Festival.

Algorithms For What? Thinking About Algorithmic Racism & How We Teach With/About Algorithms @ Digital Fluencies 02

DLA’s Digital Fluencies Series investigates what it means to develop more critical facility and engagement with digital technologies. Meetings usually combine 1-3 readings and a case study for hands-on exploration. Faculty, students, and staff at all levels of digital skill are welcome to attend.

Antoine Doré for Quanta Magazine.

Our meeting on algorithmic racism explored how we increasingly live in an algorithmic society, our everyday lives shaped by interactions with Google searches, social media platforms, artificial intelligence software, and myriad devices and programs that rely on the execution of computational algorithms. At the broadest level, We wanted to ask, updating Robert Staughton Lynd’s famous book-title phrase Knowledge For What?, algorithms for what? More specifically, we hoped to explore what it would mean to become “algorithmically fluent” and more critically aware of the ways in which algorithms reinforce or extend larger structures of racism, oppression, injustice, and misrepresentation. And how might we harness the power of algorithms for better ends in scholarship, teaching, inclusivity, freedom, and citizenship in the contemporary world?

We turned to the following readings and case study:




Much of our conversation pivoted on two issues: how do we become aware of the effects of algorithms in our lives as citizens, and what kind of curricular interventions at Middlebury might best prepare students for navigating a world of algorithms?

On the former question, we returned repeatedly to the need for awareness, while on the latter we pondered how to enhance this awareness in a liberal arts college curriculum. Our overarching sense seemed to be that not everyone must become proficient in designing algorithms as coders or programmers to develop more contextual understanding of how they function in the Internet and other digital technologies as currently designed. We can learn basic underlying histories and guiding principles for algorithmic construction that help us all better identify when algorithms are causing harm, when they turn into what Cathy O’Neil calls Weapons of Math Destruction

We can also, fascinatingly, do the reverse: we can use algorithms as a way to glimpse deeper issues of structural racism (not to mention sexism and other isms that name systemic modes of injustice, violence, and suffering). Algorithms, we learned from our readings, get designed and implemented within social conditions that are already systemically racist; is it no wonder that they then, as computational processors of data, information, and knowledge, reproduce racism? What has been most striking, as Safiya Umoja Noble and Zeynep Tufekci show, is how the particular contexts in which algorithms now dominate our lives, amplify these underlying and persistent historical forces? The problem is not algorithmic thinking per se, but rather the frameworks in which algorithms are employed.

And what are these frameworks? We noticed a few from our readings and discussion:

  1. Advertising as the business model for Silicon Valley. Our authors repeatedly pointed to the ways in which Google, Facebook, Twitter, and other dominant forces on the Internet are all driven by attracting attention to sell advertising. This, as Tufekci contends in the case of YouTube, seems to create algorithmic designs that intensify extremist views and controversy while hollowing out a common middle ground of cultural experience and exchange (although perhaps cat videos might sustain that common space, which is to say perhaps there are certain kinds of kitsch that create commonality!?).
  2. The bubble effect of social media. Because social media carves up the distinction between private and public spheres in new ways, it undercuts previous assumptions and models about shared culture. Tufekci’s work on Twitter, Facebook, and Fergusoncatches the ways in which the idea of the public sphere has fragmented into a multitude of semi-public spaces. The network models that social media algorithmically generate pose new challenges for giving the public sphere and shared public culture a robust virtual life.
  3. State power and government regulation. A focus on advertising points to the role of the state in possibly regulating algorithmic activities. However, Virginia Eubanksuncovers ways in which state power has also been misused to exacerbate long-running problems of managing the poor rather than addressing poverty itself. Sometimes this has to do with cynical political decisions or extreme political views, but the managerial-algorithmic complex operating in both corporate-commercial Silicon Valley spaces and governmental decisions may well be as crucial to confront as the problems of consumerist economics underlying the Internet infrastructure.
  4. How does greater awareness of the role of algorithms in contemporary society relate to the need for increased numeracy? How might we better understand the logics and statistics and approaches of math, statistics, and numbers as part of our civic obligation when it comes to digital technologies, the Internet, and the presence of algorithms in larger systems of oppression? And how do we do so not in a Luddite fantasy of blaming the machines, but rather with a goal of liberation—or at least reform to systems that continue to sustain regimes of racial inequity and injustice?

These are just a few issues that arose in our conversation, which also touched on matters of how we handle the benefits and drawbacks of automation through algorithmic computation, whether the makers of algorithms are ethically responsible for their creations, at one point those who use the algorithms become ethically responsible for their actions, and how we might notice or imagine alternatives to the current technological systems that, despite the more wildly utopian rhetoric about digital culture, have not only reinforced long-running forces of racism, but even escalated them further. How can we devise practical solutions and reforms as well as continue to imagine more wild, utopian alternatives and imaginaries?

Raymond Biesinger for Politico.

In addition to noticing the presence of algorithms in our shared lives as citizens, our conversation also turned to the classroom and curriculum at Middlebury. How do we teach in new ways to advance digital fluencies when it comes to the relationship between algorithms and racism? A debate emerged between two models: does one concentrate on core courses that explore digital fluencies around topics such as the ethics of algorithms or should awareness and thinking about algorithmic thinking suffuse the curriculum across multiple disciplines?

Perhaps the answer is both should happen. Core courses in Computer Science, the social sciences, information environmentalism, philosophy, and history of technology can go deep with the many facets of algorithmic analysis. Our freshman seminars might all contain some kind of digital fluency component. There might be other moments to create cross-campus engagements with the problem and possibilities of the algorithm.

At the same time, heightened awareness of algorithmic thinking might also appear within many different disciplinary areas. The challenge would be to use the increased consciousness of what algorithms are up to in order to deepen student learning about particular fields of study. A good model for this approach might be found in Benjamin Schmidt‘s work on the effort to apply algorithmic thinking to specialized scholarship in literary studies and history (in his commentary on the Jockers/Swafford debates about the Syuzhet Package and sentiment analysis of nineteenth-century European novels). Here, a seemingly esoteric scholarly disagreement cracks open a view on issues not only of algorithms but also the history of the European novel. To be sure, we’ve moved away from racism in its contemporary or historical context in this instance, but we might be able to delve deeper into all sorts of topics such as racism via considerations of the algorithm in various departments, disciplines, courses, units of courses, and fields of study.

In short, we need the history and context of algorithms to understand their workings more critically; at the same time, we might be able to use the growing prevalence of algorithms in society—and debates about their effectiveness and accuracy—as opportunities to gain deeper comprehension of the histories, contexts, methods, approaches, modes of inquiry, information, data, and knowledge that algorithms now increasingly mediate.

Addendum: Atossa Araxia Abrahamian writes about “algorithmic citizenship” in New York Times opinion piece, “Data Subjects of the World, Unite!”, 28 May 2018, drawing upon the work of James Bridle.

From Richard Pryor’s Peoria to Berkeley in the 70s & More: Scott Saul Visits Middlebury to Discuss Digital Research, Teaching, & Public Scholarship


Scott Saul.

Please join the DLA and Davis Educational Foundation Curricular Grant Steering Committee in welcoming Scott Saul, professor of English and American Studies at University of California-Berkeley, to Middlebury on Wednesday, May 2nd, and Thursday, May 3rd. Scott will be discussing his digital research, teaching, and public scholarship. The following events are open to faculty, students, and staff. 

Wednesday May 2

DLA Lunch Conversation: Scott Saul, The Berkeley Revolution—Students Develop a Digital Archive of One City’s Transformation in the Late-1960s & 1970s, 12-1:30 pm, CTLR Lounge, Davis Library. Lunch served, please sign up.

Talk: Scott Saul, Reckoning with Richard Pryor—The Seventies Comedy Explosion in the Wake of #BlackLivesMatter & #MeToo, 4:30-6 pm, Axinn 229. Light refreshments, open to the public.

Thursday, May 3

DLA Lunch Conversation: Scott Saul, Chapter & Verse—Podcasting the Digital Public Humanities, 12-1:30 pm, Library 105B, Davis Library. Lunch served, please sign up.

Richard Pryor.

Scott Saul is a Professor of English at UC-Berkeley, where he teaches courses in American literature and history. The author of Becoming Richard Pryor and Freedom Is, Freedom Ain’t: Jazz and the Making of the Sixties, he is also the creator of Richard Pryor’s Peoria, an extensive digital companion to his biography of the comedian, and The Berkeley Revolution: A digital archive of one city’s transformation in the late-1960s & 1970s, a website and collective project that emerged from an honors undergraduate seminar in American Studies at UC-Berkeley, “The Bay Area in the Seventies,” taught by Scott in the spring of 2017. He also writes as a cultural critic in The New York Times, Harper’s Magazine, The Nation, Bookforum, and other publications and hosts Chapter & Versea books-and-arts podcast sponsored by UC-Berkeley’s Doreen B. Townsend Center for the Humanities that probes the cultural imagination—what Joan Didion once called the stories we tell ourselves to live. It delves into novels, nonfiction, poems, music, film, and other touchstones of our culture, with an eye to the spells they cast and the questions they raise.

Contact Sheet of James Baldwin photographs, May 3, 1976, Rainbow Sign archive, private collection of Odette Pollar. Featured in The Berkeley Revolution.

It’s All Related: Thinking About Flat File & Relational Databases @ Digital Fluencies 01

DLA’s Digital Fluencies Series investigates what it means to develop more critical facility and engagement with digital technologies. Meetings usually combine 1-3 readings (a link to materials will be provided when necessary) and a case study for hands-on exploration. Faculty, students, and staff at all levels of digital skill are welcome to attend.

Our inaugural meeting focused on databases. Since databases undergird almost every digital project, platform, interface, and tool, but not all databases are alike, we asked how we might better understand what databases are—and what they can be—as core components of digital liberal arts scholarship. We also wanted to investigate how we might become more critically aware of database design’s history, logic, ethical questions, and potential for our scholarship, from research to teaching to working with students in other capacities.

Our readings included:

N. Katherine Hayles, “Databases,” in How We Think: Digital Media and Contemporary Technogenesis (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012), 37-40

Lev Manovich, “Database as Symbolic Form,” Convergence 5, 80 (1999), 80-99

Christiane Paul, “The Database As System and Cultural Form: Anatomies of Cultural Narratives,” in Database Aesthetics: Art in the Age of Information Overflow, ed. Viktorija Vesna Bulajic (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2007), 95-109

Sarah Whitwell, “Resistance, Racialized Violence, and Database Design,” Sherman Centre for Digital Scholarship, McMaster University, 26 February 2018

Matthew E. Davis, “The Database as a Methodological Tool,” Digital Medievalist, 10 August 2017

Matthew Lincoln, “Best Practices for Using Google Sheets in Your Data Project,” Matthew Lincoln, PhD Art History and Digital Research Blog, 26 March 2018

Hadley Wickham, “Tidy Data,” The Journal of Statistical Software 59 (2014)

[Additional post-meeting readings include M.H. Beals, “On transcending Excel, building a better world, and achieving inner peace on social media” and “Building a better data trap; or, why data structures matter.”]

Data services librarian Ryan Clement offered a wonderful basic introduction to the difference between a flat file and relational database (slides) and we looked at readings by Katherine Hayles, Lev Manovich, and Christiane Paul, among others.

A few tentative conclusions from our meeting.

First, we are using databases almost all the time when we turn to digital tools, from WordPress to filling out a form online. So it is incumbent on us to at least be aware of their presence—and the implications of their presence—even if we do not become software engineers, database designers, or coders. This can help us be more critically fluent in terms of questions of data ethics (what should be shared publicly and what should not?) since databases store data and can provide or control various kinds of access (or restrictions to access).

Second, sometimes we work with databases that arrive in more rigid form: licensed datasets and databases (a library catalog, BannerWeb) or applications that sit on top of databases (Adobe Premiere). If we and our students are more critically fluent with how the databases function within these out-of-the-box proprietary tools, we can sometimes find ways to use them or bend them toward our own ends or toward surprising new uses. Sometimes, you can tweak database tools even when they seem constraining at first.

Third, research projects in digital liberal arts often start from scratch. Most typically in an Excel or Google Sheets flat file. Matthew Lincoln has lots of great things to say about this in a recent blog post, Matthew Lincoln, “Best Practices for Using Google Sheets in Your Data Project,” Matthew Lincoln, PhD Art History and Digital Research Blog, 26 March 2018. We noticed that there is an opportunity from the beginning of these research projects to think strategically about database design. We might start out by asking two key questions: what are the qualities of the data? And what does one wish to do with the data? These questions might drive database design (or choice of out-of-the-box database software). Database design arose historically out of pragmatic solutions to data management and analysis issues. We too can join that history by exploring what the qualities of our particular data are and what we are curious about trying to do with our data (look for patterns of connection; create tagged sequences of narrative; generate surprising patterns through computational processing that people might not detect; undergird and support publication; remix and resort by certain parameters; manage fluid data of students and their interests; and so on).

Finally, we came up with three aspects of data worth thinking about: what are the particular units of data with which one is working (names, locations, dates)? What are the relations one is curious about exploring among data? And what are the sorts of operations one wishes to pursue with the data?

We thank all participants for attending the event and starting to think about what it might mean to develop our and our students’ critical digital fluency when it comes to databases.

Michael J. Kramer, Associate Director of the DLA Initiative

Upcoming topics in the Digital Fluencies Series include: Algorithms, Bots, Data, Platforms, Archives, Gender in Code, Digital Racism, Open Access, Podcasting, Remix, Publishing and Peer Review, Animation, Glitching and Deformance Tactics, Memes, Web Design, the Template, Data Visualization, GIS and Spatial Data/Thinking, and User Experience. Feel free as well to suggest a topic. We welcome your attendance at this ongoing series!

Co-sponsored by DLA, CTLR, Davis Library, and DLINQ. Organized by Leanne Galletly, User Experience & Digital Scholarship Librarian, and Michael J. Kramer, Assistant Professor of the Practice, Digital History/Humanities and Associate Director of the Digital Liberal Arts Initiative. Middlebury go link: go/digitalfluencies.

New DLA Digital Fluencies Series

What Is the Digital Fluencies Series?

The Digital Fluencies Series investigates what it means to develop more critical facility and engagement with digital technologies. Meetings usually combine 1-3 readings (a link to materials will be provided when necessary) and a case study for hands-on exploration. Faculty, students, and staff are all welcome to participate regardless of digital skillsUpcoming topics include: Bots, Data, Platforms, Archives, Gender in Code, Digital Racism, Open Access, Podcasting, Remix, Publishing and Peer Review, Animation, Glitching and Deformance Tactics, Memes, Web Design, the Template, Data Visualization, GIS and Spatial Data/Thinking, and User Experience. Feel free as well to suggest a topic as well. Co-sponsored by DLA, CTLR, Davis Library, and DLINQ. Organized by Leanne Galletly, User Experience & Digital Scholarship Librarian, and Michael J. Kramer, Assistant Professor of the Practice, Digital History/Humanities and Associate Director of the Digital Liberal Arts Initiative. Middlebury go link: go/digitalfluencies.


Past Events


DLA Digital Scholarship Opportunities March 2018

Digital Scholarship Opportunities

This is a new feature of the DLA—sent out by email roughly once a month—publicizing a selection of grant, fellowship, conference, workshop, panel, and other opportunities in the digital liberal arts. It is not all-inclusive, so feel free to send any CFPs or announcements to so that we can include them in a future email or on the DLA website. —Michael Kramer, Associate Director of the DLA, Assistant Professor of the Practice, Digital History/Humanities

Digital Pedagogy Lab 2018

University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, VA
July 30-August 3
A small contingent from Middlebury will be attending the 2018 Digital Pedagogy Lab this summer. The Digital Pedagogy Lab is a series of professional development events for faculty, technologists, administrators, students, and others who are interested in digital pedagogy. This year’s event offers four-day tracks on Digital Storytelling; Access, Privacy, and Practice; Digital Literacies; Design for Change; Data, Code, and Action; and an Introductory track for people who are beginning to explore digital learning. The event will also feature keynotes from Jade E. Davis and Anya Kamenetz. If you are interested in joining the DPL Middlebury contingent, please contact Amy Collier. More information about DPL is available at the lab’s website

CFP: SPUR—Scholarship and Practice of Undergraduate Research

Issue Theme:
“Big Data as a Tool to Promote Undergraduate Research”
Editor-in-Chief: James LaPlant
Issue Editors: Laurie Gould, Janice DeCosmo
Proposal Deadline: June 1, 2018

The theme of the spring and summer 2019 issues of SPUR: Scholarship and Practice of Undergraduate Research (formerly CUR Quarterly) will focus on big data as a tool to promote undergraduate research. Five to six articles from a wide range of disciplines are sought that explore how the applications and use of big data serve to facilitate undergraduate research in a variety of educational and professional contexts. In addition, vignettes (maximum 300 words) are welcomed that offer concrete, creative suggestions with regard to the connections between big data and undergraduate research. Examples of topics of interest include the following:

  • Assessment of the impact of undergraduate research projects involving big dat
  • Promotion of undergraduate research through big-data projects across institution
  • Interdisciplinary or multidisciplinary applications of big data in the context of undergraduate research
  • Ways that big data (or publicly available large datasets) have been leveraged for course-based research projects or for undergraduate research in online learning
  • Technological applications in the use of big data to promote undergraduate research
  • Applied research or community-based research using big data in the context of undergraduate research.
  • June 1, 2018: Submission deadline for short (300–500 words) prospectuses of proposed articles or vignettes; submit at the SPUR website 
  • June 18, 2018: Acceptance notifications issued
  • September 1, 2018: Submission deadline for final articles (2,000–3,500 words)

2018 Digital Frontiers/Institute for Digital Research in the Humanities Conference: “Finding Community in Digital Humanities”

University of Kansas, October 4-5, 2018
Digital scholarship happens at the convergence of a range of disciplines, technologies, and communities. Digital Frontiers is an annual conference that seeks to explore, celebrate, question, and disrupt these intersections in order to advance an inclusive dialog that spans boundaries and highlights unlikely connections in the field of Digital Humanities. In 2018, the Digital Frontiers community is joining forces with the Digital Humanities Forum held annually at University of Kansas’s Institute for Digital Research in the Humanities (IDRH). These two dynamic communities unite to celebrate digital scholarship as a diverse and growing field of humanist inquiry. Conference website.

The theme for the 2018 Digital Frontiers/IDRH Conference is Finding Community in Digital Humanities. When the diversity of disciplines, technologies, and communities involved in DH converge, we are often confronted with novel and/or previously uninvestigated approaches to the field. How do these aspects overlap? Where do they diverge? Each community brings its own voice and perspective, often urging us to interrogate the assumptions hidden within our own work. This conference’s theme asks participants to examine these intersections and bring us into dialogue with one another. Aside from disciplinary and research communities in the Digital Humanities, we also frame communities as those of lived experiences: international communities, marginalized communities and communities of resistance, classroom communities, digital communities, and others.

The Digital Frontiers Program Committee invites proposals for the 2018 conference (October 4-5). The planning committee practices intentional inclusion and encourages submissions from researchers, students, librarians archivists, genealogists, historians, information and technology professionals, and scientists. We welcome perspectives from all individuals and are interested in fostering a dialog of critical, self-reflexive DH invested in different vectors of identity and encourage research produced by or concerning vulnerable and marginalized communities, historically or contemporaneously. In keeping with our focus on communities, we encourage submissions on DH praxis grounded in and accountable to the needs and ethics of local communities.

Conference content may include:

Fully Constituted Panels
Individual Scholarly Papers or Presentations
(Note: early stage research, project updates, and single-institution “case studies” should be submitted as posters)
Hands-On Workshops
Posters or Infographics
Proposals will be double-blind peer reviewed, with final decisions made by the Program Committee. The Program Committee will be favorably disposed toward content that addresses the work, needs, or other aspects of:
Disciplinary and research communities in the digital humanities and collaboration among, between, and across scholarly communities: #altac and hybrid careers in DH, DH in Cultural Memory and GLAM institutions, Digital Humanities applications in the social sciences and humanities.

Digital Communities in praxis: digital pedagogies, socio-technical infrastructures for sustaining digital scholarship, digital scholarship in city- or region-focused studies in the U.S. Southwest and Midwest.

Marginalized communities and communities of resistance: social justice in digital communities, disability studies in DH, digital race studies, queer DH, antifascist DH, postcolonial digital humanities, digital feminisms, digital indigenous studies.

International communities: postcolonial DH, research in languages other than English and from non-Euro American contexts, digital scholarship in city- or region-focused studies in the global south.

Classroom communities: STEAM/Art + Science Intersections, DH in Music/Musicology, Digital Methods in Arts Education, Open Educational Resources (DH+OER), Higher Ed and Net Neutrality

Submit your proposal here. The Deadline is April 6, 2018. Registration for conference opens June 1, 2018.

Intentionally Digital, Intentionally Black Conference

African American Digital Humanities Initiative, University of Maryland, October 18-20, 2018
Call for Proposals
What happens to digital humanities inquiry when we begin with Black culture, Black thought, and Black persons at the center of our endeavors? How does this shift challenge and expand both the humanities and the digital? What happens to Black and African American humanities research when we lead with the digital?

Interdisciplinary inquiry into both the online practices of black users and humanities research focused on black history and culture using digital tools has expanded in the past decade. Too often, this work happens on the margins of established disciplines, boundaries, and paradigms. Rather than arriving at black digital research as an afterthought or a tactic to achieve “diversity”, privileging black theory and black culture in our scholarship can provide alternate paradigms through which to understand the digital and the humanistic. 

The first national conference of the African American Digital Humanities (AADHum) Initiative at the University of Maryland will explore how digital studies and digital humanities-based research, teaching, and community projects can center African American history and culture. AADHum invites submissions that may include scholarly inquiry into Black diasporic and African American uses of digital technologies; digital humanities projects that focus on black history and culture; race and digital theory; the intersection of black studies and digital humanities; information studies, cultural heritage, and community-based digital projects; pedagogical interventions; digital tools and artifacts; black digital humanities and memory; social media and black activism/movements, etc.

Proposal Submissions

We invite submissions from within and outside the academy – students, faculty, librarians, independent scholars and community members – to actively participate in the conference!

Proposals are due by Monday, April 9, 2018. Proposals should be submitted online. Multiple proposal submissions (maximum of 3 submissions) from an individual or group are acceptable. Selections and notifications will be made by mid-June 2018.

Types of Proposals 

Individual Papers. Please provide an abstract of 300-500 words and brief bio (75 words).

Panels. Please provide a panel rationale of no more than 300 words, with individual paper abstracts (150-300 words) for up to 5 participants. Include titles and institutional affiliations for each participant.

Digital Posters. Posters may present work on any relevant topic in any stage of development. Poster presentations are intended to be interactive, providing the opportunity to exchange ideas one-on-one with attendees. Please provide an abstract of 300-500 words. 

Tools/Digital Project Demonstration. Tools/Digital Project demonstrations are intended to showcase near-complete or completed work in an interactive environment. Please provide an abstract of 300-500 words. Abstracts should include 1) research significance, 2) stage (near complete/complete), 3) intervention of platform/project/tool 4) demonstration requirements (technology).

Roundtables. Please provide a rationale of no more than 300 words, accompanied by a list of 4-5 participants (including title and institutional affiliation).

For each proposal, please include 3-5 keywords.

About AADHum

The AADHum Initiative (Synergies among African American History and Culture and Digital Humanities) at the University of Maryland is an initiative funded in part by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. AADHum seeks to prepare the next generation of scholars and scholarship by facilitating critical dialogue between digital humanists and African American centered humanities scholarship. The Initiative works to expand the reach of the digital humanities into African American/Africana/Black Studies while enriching humanities research with new methods, archives, and tools. This initiative enhances digital research while recognizing the expertise and knowledge from traditional humanities research and how it may propel digital scholarship forward. In so doing, it fosters a dialogue among a community of scholars from within and outside the academy as they venture into new research and pedagogical endeavors.

 “The Digital and Democracy” Digital Scholarship Colloquium 2018

Case Western Reserve University, November 1-2, 2018
Join us for a rousing discussion of democracy and the digital at the fourth Digital Scholarship Colloquium hosted by Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. We are now accepting proposals for papers, posters, panels, and/or demonstrations from scholars, students, librarians/archivists, technologists, non-profit researchers, and community organizers that interrogate the ways that digital tools work to either uphold or upend democracy, and how research might be used to advocate for positive impact within communities experiencing disruption and inequality. The colloquium is an opportunity to connect people to the scholarly work and digital tools that directly or indirectly affects their lives and civil liberties.

The colloquium will take place between November 1-2, 2018. Proposals will fall into one of three categories:

Methodology: Proposed submissions discuss digital scholarship projects as case studies, including their workflows and best practices
Theory: Proposed submissions discuss theoretical topics around digital scholarship, such as the ethics of big data, impact measurement, DS labor practices, or DS classroom pedagogy.
Workshops: Proposed submissions aim to teach attendees a skill using a specific digital tool, e.g. text mining with Voyant, a quick intro to Timeline JS, or how to “hydrate” social media data. Attendees would bring laptops to these sessions
Proposals may include, but are not limited to topics related to healthcare, law, social sciences, housing, the environment, or social justice activism, such as: Geospatial analysis of gerrymandering; Using big data to fight the opioid crisis; Algorithmic bias and predictive policing; Digital surveillance and constitutional rights; Equitable labor and cultural production; Net neutrality and digital access.

Please submit your proposals here. All submissions must be received by May 31, 2018, and notifications of acceptance will be sent by mid-June. Proposals should clearly connect to the theme of democracy and digital scholarship and identify action-oriented takeaways or opportunities for collaboration in and out of academia. Proposals where academics or nonprofit researchers are analyzing community-based projects should include members of that community on the panel. Proposals should evince a range of perspectives and identities among presenters. Accepted proposals should follow guidelines on creating accessible presentations.

Accepted papers will have the opportunity to be published in an open access journal created by Case Western Reserve University and hosted in our institutional repository, Digital Case. If you have any questions, please contact Stacie Williams, Team Lead for Digital Learning & Scholarship or Charlie Harper, Digital Learning & Scholarship Librarian.



Transacting DH: Roles, Rights, and Responsibilities of Collaboration

Association for Computer in the Humanities (ACH)
In 2011, Tanya Clement and Doug Reside convened an NEH-supported conversation titled Off the Tracks, which led to the eventual publication of the Collaborators’ Bill of Rights. Prompted by this year’s presidential theme–Textual Transactions–this guaranteed panel supported by the Association for Computer in the Humanities (ACH) will address questions of “transaction” as a combination of form and function. What models of collaboration have evolved across DH projects over time? How have advisors and students negotiated their roles in digital humanities research projects? What are the rights and responsibilities of mentoring, supervising, directing, or staffing a digital humanities research project? What are the boundaries of these transactions? How can digital humanities transactions challenge our ideas of collaboration? 

This session will consider what the rights, roles, and responsibilities associated with forms of DH research and pedagogical transaction.  What models are there? What are the pitfalls? What honest conversation can we have about them? We would like to hear models from those working in a variety of situations: faculty, altac, library, student, advisory board, volunteer, or administrator. Proposals should include be no more than 250 words and describe both the opportunities and challenges of “transacting” digital humanities projects. Please also include a short one-paragraph biographical statement. Proposals can be emailed to Lisa Rhody by March 26th.

Keystone DH

Penn State University in State College, July 16-18, 2018.
We are excited to announce that this year’s Keystone DH will be held at Penn State University in State College. Now in its fourth year, Keystone DH is an annual conference and a network of institutions and practitioners committed to advancing collaborative scholarship in digital humanities research and pedagogy across the Mid-Atlantic. Recognizing how DH scholarship in practice necessarily bridges conventional academic distinctions, we invite contributions from across the field, including faculty researchers, unaffiliated scholars, librarians, technologists, artists and critical-makers.
Complete the Proposal Submission Form by March 29, 2018. The Keystone Digital Humanities conference invites proposals for papers, interactive demonstrations, workshops, or panel discussions for its annual meeting, which will be held at the Pennsylvania State University, July 16-18, 2018. Paper presentations will be 15 minutes in length, while panel discussions and workshops must be proposed by all participants and not exceed one hour in length. 
Please submit your name, email address, title, and type of your proposed presentation, and a proposal of 200-300 words in the form linked below. Paper abstracts should specify the thesis, methodology, and conclusions. If you are proposing an interactive presentation or workshop, please include in the description a requested time length for the session. The proposal deadline is March 29, 2018, and proposers will be notified by April 13, 2018.

We will be offering a number of student bursaries in support of presenting at the conference that will cover the cost of two nights lodging at one of the conference hotels. Note that only students who are submitting a proposal will be considered. To be considered for a student bursary, click on that option at the end of the submission form. We will notify recipients as part of the proposal acceptance process. 

Questions about submissions or about the conference in general can be directed to John Russell.

NEH-Mellon Fellowships for Digital Publication

Deadline: April 11, 2018.
Through NEH-Mellon Fellowships for Digital Publication, the National Endowment for the Humanities and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation jointly support individual scholars pursuing interpretive research projects that require digital expression and digital publication. To be eligible for this special opportunity, an applicant’s plans for digital publication must be essential to the project’s research goals. That is, the project must be conceived as digital because the nature of the research and the topics being addressed demand presentation beyond traditional print publication. Successful projects will likely incorporate visual, audio, and/or other multimedia materials or flexible reading pathways that could not be included in traditionally published books, as well as an active distribution plan.
All projects must be interpretive. That is, projects must advance a scholarly argument through digital means and tools. Stand-alone databases and other projects that lack an interpretive argument are not eligible.
Applications submitted for this special opportunity will be evaluated separately from other NEH Fellowships applications, but, like applications submitted to the NEH Fellowships program, will be held to the highest standards of scholarship.
Applicants interested in conducting research and writing leading to traditional print or e-reader publications should apply to the NEH Fellowships program.

NEH Digital Humanities Advancement Grants

Deadline: June 5, 2018.
Digital Humanities Advancement Grants (DHAG) support digital projects throughout their lifecycles, from early start-up phases through implementation and long-term sustainability. Experimentation, reuse, and extensibility are hallmarks of this grant category, leading to innovative work that can scale to enhance research, teaching, and public programming in the humanities.
This program is offered twice per year. Proposals are welcome for digital initiatives in any area of the humanities.
Through a special partnership, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) anticipates providing additional funding to this program to encourage innovative collaborations between museum or library professionals and humanities professionals to advance preservation of, access to, use of, and engagement with digital collections and services. Through this partnership, IMLS and NEH may jointly fund some DHAG projects that involve collaborations with museums and/or libraries.
Digital Humanities Advancement Grants may involve
creating or enhancing experimental, computationally-based methods, techniques, or infrastructure that contribute to the humanities;
pursuing scholarship that examines the history, criticism, and philosophy of digital culture and its impact on society, or explores the philosophical or practical implications and impact of digital humanities in specific fields or disciplines; or
revitalizing and/or recovering existing digital projects that promise to contribute substantively to scholarship, teaching, or public knowledge of the humanities.

NEH Digital Projects for the Public

Deadline: June 6, 2018.
Digital Projects for the Public grants support projects that cogently interpret and analyze humanities content in formats that will attract broad public audiences.
Digital platforms—such as websites, mobile applications and tours, interactive touch screens and kiosks, games, and virtual environments—can reach diverse audiences and bring the humanities to life for the American people. The program offers three levels of support for digital projects: grants for Discovery projects (early-stage planning work), Prototyping projects (proof-of-concept development work), and Production projects (end-stage production and distribution work). While projects can take many forms, shapes, and sizes, your request should be for an exclusively digital project or for a digital component of a larger project.
All Digital Projects for the Public projects should
  • present analysis that deepens public understanding of significant humanities stories and ideas;
  • incorporate sound humanities scholarship;
  • involve humanities scholars in all phases of development and production;
  • include appropriate digital media professionals;
  • reach a broad public through a realistic plan for development, marketing, and distribution;
  • create appealing digital formats for the general public; and
  • demonstrate the capacity to sustain themselves.
All projects should also demonstrate the potential to attract a broad, general, nonspecialist audience, either online or in person at venues such as museums, libraries or other cultural institutions. Applicants may also choose to identify particular communities and groups, including students, to whom a project may have particular appeal.

March 2018 DLA Newsletter

Note from the Associate Director
March finds much to report at the DLA.
We had a productive visit from Seth Denbo ’90, Director of Scholarly Communication & Digital Initiatives at the American Historical Association, to give a talk about History in the Era of the Web and discuss the AHA’s guidelines for promotion and tenure in relation to digital scholarship. Seth also met with various faculty about their digital research and teaching and, as an added bonus, enjoyed returning to his alma mater.
Amy Collier and Mike Roy hosted an Academic Roundtable on What Is Digital Fluency & Why Does It Matter? at which faculty and staff from across Middlebury began to discuss what it means for students (and faculty and staff) to be fluent in digital technologies. We paid particular attention to the growing significance of digital technologies for policy, politics, economics, culture, civic engagement, social justice, and education itself. What do we need to know both within particular disciplines and across them in the broader liberal arts at Middlebury? How can students (and all of us) learn the skills needed to navigate these new contexts with an improved critical awareness; and how can we advance knowledge more fruitfully within the digital paradigm? We will be following up on this meeting with a monthly series of conversations about particular digital topics, beginning with an exploration of databases on April 4. Regardless of digital expertise, students, faculty, and staff are welcome to attend (and enjoy lunch) at the CTLR Lounge.
We also continue our Behind the Scenes series with two “reports from the digital field.” Matthew Dickerson will discuss his video work with a student during his place-based research and writing in Wyoming. Sarah Laursen will talk about her ongoing research on ancient Chinese gold, which includes the construction of a database to organize her English and Chinese data, as well as her preparations for an exhibition at the Middlebury College Museum of Art, which includes 3D digital models made using photogrammetry, interactive maps, and videos about metalsmithing. Please join us!
Our current DLA Fellows—Sarah Laursen along with Florence Feiereisen and Amy Morsman—continue on their digital projects. As always, you can consult with us on digital scholarship at any stage of research, course preparation, or scholarly thinking. Look forward to meeting you if I have not already and to continuing conversations that have already begun.
—Michael Kramer, Associate Director of the DLA, Assistant Professor of the Practice, Digital History/Humanities

DLA Behind the Scenes: Digital Story-Telling about Trout and Ecology—Matthew Dickerson

Join us for lunch on Tuesday, March 20th from 12:15-1:30pm in the CTLR Lounge for our next Behind the Scenes presentation.

Matthew Dickerson worked with a student summer research assistant on digital storytelling. The student went with him on a month-long place-based research and writing trip to Wyoming. While Matthew worked on his personal research and a book project, he worked with the student to communicate that same material through short narrative and narrated videos. Matthew was responsible for content, but together they collaborated and script and storyline. The student had considerable creative flexibility in presenting the final videos.

Lunch will be provided.  Please RSVP so that we can order enough food.

Digital Fluencies 01: Databases

Please join us for lunch on Wednesday, April 4th from 12 pm-1:30 pm in the CTLR Lounge for the first gathering in our Digital Fluencies series. Sign up to receive link to PDFs of readings and so we know how much lunch to order.

Databases undergird almost every digital publishing project, platform, interface, and tool. How do we better understand what databases are—and what they can be—as a key aspect of the digital liberal arts? We’ll gather to explore the topic. 
Faculty, students, and staff at all levels are welcome to attend participate regardless of digital skills. Readings include: N. Katherine Hayles, “Databases,” in How We Think: Digital Media and Contemporary Technogenesis (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012), 37-40, pdf provided when you sign up); Lev Manovich, “Database as Symbolic Form,” Convergence 5, 80 (1999), 80-99; Christiane Paul, “The Database As System and Cultural Form: Anatomies of Cultural Narratives,” in Database Aesthetics: Art in the Age of Information Overflow, ed. Viktorija Vesna Bulajic (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2007), 95-109. Optional Readings: Sarah Whitwell, “Resistance, Racialized Violence, and Database Design,” Sherman Centre for Digital Scholarship, McMaster University, 26 February 2018Matthew E. Davis, “The Database as a Methodological Tool,” Digital Medievalist, 10 August 2017. Case study: Ryan Clement, Data Services Librarian, will lead us through a comparison of two different database structures, how they have been used and why they were chosen as a way to consider how we might use databases more critically in digital liberal arts projects.
What Is the Digital Fluencies Series? The Digital Fluencies series investigates what it means to develop critical awareness, engagement, and competency with digital technologies. Meetings general combine 1-3 readings (a link to materials will be provided when necessary) and a case study for hands-on exploration. Faculty, students, and staff at all levels are welcome to attend participate regardless of digital skills.
Digital Fluencies 02: Algorithms will be held on May 9, 12-1:30 pm. Future topics include: Bots, Data, Platforms, Archives, Gender in Code, Digital Racism, Open Access, Podcasting, Remix, Publishing and Peer Review, Animation, Gltiching and Deformance Tactics, Memes, Web Design, the Template, Data Visualization, GIS and Spatial Data/Thinking, User Experience, and other topics. Feel free to suggest a topic as well. 
Co-sponsored by DLACTLRDavis Library, and DLINQ. Organized by Leanne Galletly, User Experience & Digital Scholarship Librarian, and Michael J. Kramer, Assistant Professor of the Practice, Digital History/Humanities and Associate Director of the Digital Liberal Arts Initiative.

DLA Behind the Scenes Series: Museums Enter the Digital Age—Sarah Laursen

Join us for lunch on Tuesday, April 17th from 12:15-1:30pm for our next Behind the Scenes presentation. 

Sarah Laursen is researching ancient Chinese gold for a book project and an exhibition that will be held at the Middlebury College Museum of Art in the fall of 2019.  She will discuss the process of creating a database to organize her English and Chinese data, as well as her preparations for the exhibition, which will include 3D digital models made using photogrammetry, interactive maps, and videos about metalsmithing.
Lunch will be provided. Please RSVP so that we can order enough food.


Seth Denbo, Director of Scholarly Communication & Digital Initiatives at the American Historical Association, Visits Middlebury

Paul’s Cross, from 50 feet. From the Visual Model, constructed by Joshua Stephens, rendered by Jordan Gray.

Seth Denbo, Director of Scholarly Communication & Digital Initiatives at the American Historical Association, visits the DLA and CTLR on Wednesday, March 7th, 2018. Seth, an alumnus of Middlebury College, will give a lecture on “Doing History in the Era of the Web” and, in a workshop, he will discuss “Digital Scholarship & Professional Evaluation.” He will also be meeting informally with DLA Fellows and others on campus interested in digital scholarship.

Seth Denbo.

Seth Denbo is Director of Scholarly Communication and Digital Initiatives at the American Historical Association. Seth majored in history at Middlebury College, and after graduating in 1990 he spent several years working in academic publishing at Routledge in New York and then London. He earned his PhD from the University of Warwick in England, where he worked on the cultural history of eighteenth-century Britain. After teaching for several years, Seth moved into digital humanities work, as part of teams developing innovative digital projects, first in the Department of Digital Humanities at King’s College London and then at the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities at the University of Maryland. At the AHA he oversees the publication department and attempts to keep up with the changing landscape of digital scholarship in history and the impact of the digital age on scholarly communication more broadly. 

Panel: Engaging New Learning and Public Spheres with Technology

Next week, there will be another event related to writing pedagogy—a panel entitled “Engaging New Learning & Public Spheres with Technology,” which will place on Monday March 5th, at 4:30pm in Axinn 229.  Please see below for more details.

Title: Engaging New Learning and Public Spheres with Technology

Description: Technologies in the classroom can be used to create complex, collaborative projects that challenge students cognitively and rhetorically. Faculty in this “Show & Tell” panel conversation will discuss how they develop invigorating learning spaces that include writing in digital spaces. 

Panelists and topics:

  • MaryEllen Bertolini (WRPR, Writing Center): Digital Storytelling
  • Laurie Essig (GSFS): Feminist Blogging 
  • Ellery Foutch (AMST): Teaching with Tableau Vivants
  • Jason Mittell (FMMC): Videographic Film Studies
  • Hector J Vila (WRPR, CTLR): Online Writing for Publication (and will be moderator)

Refreshments will be served!

Thank you,


Shawna Shapiro, PhD

Associate Professor of Writing and Linguistics

Director of the Writing & Rhetoric Program

Work With a Digital Media Tutor

During the summer, the Office for Digital Learning and Inquiry (DLINQ) employs, trains, and mentors students who assist faculty with various digital projects. You can view examples of digital projects that students have helped with in the past here.
If you are interested in working with a tutor this summer please submit a project proposal by filling out this form.
While the tutor will work with you during the months of June, July and August, we will be in touch with you towards the end of the spring semester to set up an initial meeting and connect you with your student tutor if we have the capacity for your project. We look forward to hearing from you!
Finally, if you would like to recommend a student for the tutor position, please send them this link to our current job posting:
For more information, contact:

Heather Stafford

Digital Learning and Inquiry
Middlebury College

Designing for Digital: The Future of Libraries

There will be a livestream of UT Austin’s Designing for Digital: The Future of Libraries at DFL March 5-7. Please stop by for any sessions you may be interested, view full schedule here.

Monday, March 5: LIB 131 (10:30 – 5pm) – limited space in room

Tuesday, March 6: LIB 105 (10:30 – 5pm) 

Wednesday, March 7: LIB 131 (10:45 – 12:25pm) – limited space in room

Reach out if you have any questions. Hope to see you there!

Thanks, Leanne

Leanne Galletly (she/her/hers)

User Experience & Digital Scholarship Librarian


Davis Family Library 207