The intention is not to come up with yet another
manifesto, or to describe what is already there, but rather to
focus on the intermediate future and what we can do to move beyond
just discussing the field to actually implementing a seven-year
plan of action. The event is invitation only.
It is suggested that the tent of 'big tent digital humanities'
is not large enough. While an inclusive notion of the digital
humanities seems tenable, we also need to acknowledge that the
digital humanities is not everything. There will be a focus on
scholarly and educational perspectives, as well as institutional
and infrastructural issues, and again, implementation in a
mid-range time perspective is key. Sweden (and Scandinavia) will
serve as one case study, but the scope is clearly
Questions discussed may include the (digital) humanities as
a means of tackling challenges in the world, the digital humanities
as a humanities project, the connection between the digital
humanities and media studies, postcolonial/gender/queer
perspectives, the "neutrality" of tools, the role of making,
intellectual middleware, research questions that drive
infrastructural development, the importance of situated
infrastructure (such as labs), key contributions to scholarship and
education, the digital humanities as an educational think tank, and
the connection to environmental/medical/public humanities. All
these (and other) questions will be framed against a mid-range
time perspective and case studies.
HUMlab will serve as a platform for the workshop, which also
means that some of the sentiment of HUMlab will hopefully be part
of the workshop: an inclusive notion of the digital humanities, the
importance of intellectual and technological engagement, and
sharpness and intensity as well as niceness. Some materials and
questions will be distributed ahead of time, and participants will
participate actively based on the readings and the different
experience and perspectives they bring to the table. Participants
will also be asked to suggest issues to be discussed.
Date, time, activities:
The workshop will start at 10:00 am December 5, 2013, and end in
the late evening of December 6. There will also be seminars and
activities in the afternoon of December 4. The social program will
be integrated, and there will be a dinner in the evening of
December 5. Also, there will be a traditional glögg (mulled wine)
Christmas party at Patrik Svensson's house in the evening of
December 6. Participants are invited to attend the glögg party as
well as the dinner.
The format will be mixed, but a number of participants will be
asked to do brief presentations, and there will be themed sessions
as well as group work, technology-centered sessions and we
will make most use of the lab facilities. Some key remote
participants will also be brought into the conversation. There will
be plenty of time for structured discussion.
Project work will be carried out in groups. The projects will
principally be about the digital humanities seven years from now
and the job will be to articulate a concept and an implementation
plan, and to make use of some of HUMlab's technological
infrastructure to do this. There will be conditions and constraints
(to make the task feasible and sharp enough). More information will
be given as we get closer to December.
In the late afternoon of December 6, one of HUMlab's screen and
interaction rich spaces will be used for an installation based on
the workshop and the participants' project work. A wider community
will be invited to the installation, which will serve as a
multiple-perspective implementation plan enacted in an interaction
Organisers / Advisors:
The workshop is convened by HUMlab, Umeå University. Patrik
Svensson serves as the curator, and works together with staff and
faculty at Umeå University, a reference group and a distinguished
advisory board. Among the members in the reference group are:
Cecilia Lindhé (Umeå University), Pelle Snickars (the Royal
Library), Mats Dahlström (the Swedish School of Library and
Information Science), Coppélie Cocq (Umeå University) and Finn Arne
Jørgensen (Umeå University). The members of the distinguished
advisory board are Johanna Drucker (UC Los Angeles), Alan Liu (UC
Santa Barbara) and Andrew Prescott (King's College London).
Partly funded by the Marcus and Amalia Wallenberg Foundation
(through Patrik Svensson's Chair in Digital Humanities).