PDF version of this assignment.

Sign up for projects here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1K-VkymZ6ymgiNv3-IXlNkW_atxMkLMzatunsTB3Wixw/edit?usp=sharing

Due Date

  • Friday, March 11 by 10 pm to our course site


Thanks to Ryan Cordell and Brian Croxall for previous versions of this assignment.

This short assignment is meant to start your wheels turning in terms of what you might like to do for your final project in this class (for more on the basics of the final project, see our course policies page under “Required Work”). You will identify and research a “key project” in the digital humanities as a way to get some small idea of the kinds of projects that others have done and of what you might begin to do in this class. Ideally, this project will have some bearing on your own research interests and/or your initial ideas about your final project.

You will then compose a 1000-word blog post in which you analyze your key project’s methodologies, innovations, interpretive power, and design (categorize this post under “Key Project Analysis”). Your aim will be to help us all understand the project’s contributions to the discipline of literary/cultural studies and/or to the larger interdisciplinary digital humanities community.

Details & Requirements

As you investigate your project and prepare your posts, you should consider the following questions:

  • What are the project’s strengths and weaknesses?
  • What assumptions have been made in designing the project? (What are the project’s sources? How is the site designed? etc.)
  • What is the project’s primary audience? Is it addressed to other researchers, students, or both? What discipline(s) does it seem to be addressing?
  • How easy is it to use the site or tool?
  • How does the project connect to other work, either in DH or in literary studies?
  • The big one: What does this project contribute to the larger body of knowledge in literary/cultural studies? In the interdisciplinary field of digital humanities?

As you are doing this assignment, you should feel free to contact the author(s), editor(s) or project lead(s) about their work. Not only will they be able to answer any specific questions you may have, they may also be able to give you valuable information about the project that you can’t necessarily find online. It’s also been my experience that people are generally very willing to discuss their work, its methodologies, and its innovations.

I’ve listed a few projects that you might choose below (I’ve mainly included projects with a literary/cultural studies bent, but some are more historical). You can also use the DHCommons project registry or the Around DH in 80 Days initiative to find something that appeals to you more. Once you’ve chosen your project, please use this spreadsheet to announce your decision to the class so that there aren’t any duplicates. Only one person should write on any given key project.

Possible Projects:

This assignment is worth 10% of your course grade.