Nov 11: Savvy Researcher Workshop — Principles of Text Encoding in the Humanities using TEI

All are welcome to attend the Savvy Researcher Workshop on the principles of text encoding using TEI on Wednesday, November 11th in the Main Library. Register for the event on the Savvy Researcher Workshops website prior to attendance here.

Principles of Text Encoding in the Humanities using TEI

Eleanor Dickson

November 11th, 3-3:50pm

314 Main Library

The Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) is the humanities-centric XML standard for encoding digital text. Participants will learn the principles of text encoding with the TEI Guidelines, and receive an introduction on how to start creating transcriptions for digital humanities projects focused on scholarly editions and textual analysis. All experience levels welcome, though beginners should consider attending the introductory XML workshop to prepare.

Nov. 3: Digital humanities brown bag in the library

Come lunch and learn at a digital humanities-focused brown bag event. And if you’d like to explore the topic more deeply, consider attending this month’s Digital Humanities Reading Group the week before.

Black Women Big Data: Utilizing Topic Modeling to Understand Black Women’s Lived Experience

Nicole Brown

November 2nd, 12-1

308 Main Library

Nicole Brown, postdoc at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications, will talk about a recently completed research project that used topic modeling to examine over 1,000 documents in the HathiTrust digital library to identify general discourse in sources by or about African American women. She will discuss the process the team used to create a corpus for analysis; integrate theory with methods, specifically how they trained the topic model algorithm while incorporating Standpoint Theory; interpret quantitative results; and bridge disciplinary boundaries. Bring your lunch and learn about the innovative research happening at Illinois!

Oct. 29: IPRH Digital Humanities Reading Group

Mark your calendars!

The next meeting date for the IPRH’s Digital Humanities Reading Group will be on Thursday October 29th. This month we will be discussing the intersection of cultural criticism and topic modeling within Digital Humanities in anticipation of Nicole Brown’s DH Brown bag “Black Women Big Data: Utilizing Topic Modeling to Understand Black Women’s Lived Experience” on November 5.

Date & Location:

Thursday October 29th from 2:30-4:00PM
Room 341 of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science (GSLIS) Building

Related Events:
DH Brownbag “Black Women Big Data: Utilizing Topic Modeling to Understand Black Women’s Lived Experience” on November 5.

Readings for discussion:

DiMaggio, P., Nag, M. and Blei, D. “Exploiting affinities between topic modeling and the sociological perspective on culture? Application to newspaper coverage of U.S. government arts funding”, Poetics 41 (2013): 570-606

Lui, A. 2012. “Where is Cultural Criticism in the Digital Humanities?”, In M. Gold (ed), Debates in Digital Humanities, University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis (2012). Available at

For reference:

New to the group?

We are interested in developing critically grounded perspectives on what it means to do digital humanities work in various institutional contexts. As a starting point, we will examine some prominent pieces that discuss themes related to defining, critiquing, practicing, and teaching “digital” humanities. We hope to supplement these readings with additional perspectives informed by the interests, scholarship, and work of those who do digital humanities on campus. Visit our webpage at or view past reading selections at

[Posted on behalf of the DH Reading Group.]

Free Webinars: Learn Scalar Online

scalar-logoThe Alliance for Networking Visual Culture has announced a series of free “Introduction to Scalar”  and “Intermediate Scalar” webinars.

From the announcement page:

Out “Introduction to Scalar” webinars will cover basic features of the platform: a review of existing Scalar books and a hands-on introduction to paths, tags, annotations and importing media. Our “Intermediate Scalar” webinars will delve into more advanced topics including the effective use of visualizations, annotating with media and a primer on customizing appearances in Scalar.

There are currently three dates with openings:

Intermediate Scalar: March 26, 4pm-6pm (PST)
Introduction to Scalar: April 9, 10am-12pm (PST)
Intermediate Scalar: April 30, 10am-12pm (PST)

Space is limited. Register here!

Upcoming Event: The Refugee Project

The Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures invites you to attend the following event:

The Refugee Project: An Outreach and Digital Humanities Student Faculty Initiative at Hamilton College

John Bartle, Associate Professor and Chair
Dept. of German and Russian, Hamilton College

WHEN: Monday, February 16, at 4 p.m.

LOCATION: Lincoln 1092

Professor Bartle, a specialist on Dostoevsky and Book Review Editor for Slavic and East European Journal, will be speaking about a faculty and student public engagement project with the refugee community of Utica, N.Y. The Refugee Project received funding from a Mellon grant through the Digital Humanities Initiative at Hamilton, and has involved collaboration between Hamilton faculty and students, colleagues from Utica College and Mohawk Valley Community College, as well as local refugee communities and organizations serving them.

The presentation will include the screening of two short films, Genesee Lights (about the Bosnian refugee community in Utica) and The Newcomers (featuring Karen refugees from Southeast Asia and other recent arrivals).

Cosponsored by: Office of Public Engagement, Institute for Computing in the Humanities, Arts, and Social Science (I-CHASS), Center for East Asia and Pacific Studies (CEAPS), and Russian, East European and Eurasian Center (REEEC)

CFP: Digital Immigrants and Digital Natives conference, April 2015

CFP: “Digital Immigrants and Digital Natives: Filling the Void”

Vanderbilt University (Nashville, TN, USA)

April 11, 2015

The Graduate Student Association of Modern Languages (GSLMA) at Vanderbilt University has released a Call for Papers for its inaugural conference titled “Digital Immigrants and Digital Natives: Filling the Void.” Held on April 11, the conference, hosted at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, will feature keynote speaker Dr. Carl Blyth, an applied linguist at University of Texas at Austin.

According to the organizers, “the title of the conference problematizes Scott Prensky’s 2001 terms “digital native” and “digital immigrant.” Although these terms attempt to explain the generational gap and its technological divide, our conference looks to the ways in which the reality of technology in the language classroom and in our research defies such classifications.”

Conference organizers welcome submissions related to:

  • Digital Humanities and the arts
  • Digital Humanities in dissertations
  • Digital Humanities and pedagogy
  • Digital Humanities and race
  • Digital Humanities and disability
  • Digital Humanities and gender studies
  • Digital Humanities as multicultural and multilingual
  • Applying specific instructional models in CALL
  • MOOCS and other open online courses for language learning
  • Outcome based frameworks in CALL design
  • Gaming and virtual worlds
  • Online Intercultural Exchanges
  • CMC and OCMC in the language classroom
  • Specific CALL tools and their implementation in the classroom
  • CALL project designs (and evaluation)
  • The direction of Digital Humanities as a field
  • Crowdsourcing scholarly research

Proposals may be submitted in English, French, German, Portuguese, and Spanish.

Proposals should be sent to with an abstract of 250-350 words and a separate title page that includes name, email, phone and university affiliation. For more information on the conference, please see the GSMLA blog’s Call for Papers.

Abstract submission deadline: January 26, 2015

Library Collections as Humanities Data

Thomas Padilla and Devin Higgins recently collaborated on an essay on “thinking about library collections as Humanities data.” Padilla (Michigan State University) shared the postprint PDF on his blog. From the paper, “Library Collections as Humanities Data: The Facet Effect”:

Many library collections contain digital text, images, and audio. Materials in these forms and the metadata that describe them are frequently the objects of inquiry that Digital Humanists, inside and outside the library, subject to computational analysis to extend their research and pedagogy. Librarians can further enhance use of their digital collections by considering how thinking of them as Humanities data, and promoting them as such, can encourage uses beyond reading, viewing, and listening. For an indicator of what this thinking looks like in practice it is instructive to consider the Library of Congress’ effort to make digitized newspaper data openly available through an Application Programming Interface (API), allowing algorithmic interaction in addition to reading through an interface that stands as a surrogate for an analog reading experience (Johnston, 2011, 2014). Michigan State University Libraries has also made modest steps in this direction by making select digitized collections available as bulk downloads (Michigan State University Libraries, 2014). Both efforts are ground in an understanding that data afford new opportunities for user interaction with library collections.

The essay can be accessed via the PDF (above) or in Public Services Quarterly:

Padilla, Thomas G., and Devin Higgins. 2014. “Library Collections as Humanities Data: The Facet Effect.”  Public Services Quarterly 10 (4): 324–35. doi:10.1080/15228959.2014.963780