Electronic Literature as Digital Humanities

I am thrilled to share with you two fantastic news in the area of electronic literature and digital humanities. First, my article “Teaching Electronic Literature as Digital Humanities: A Proposal” is now available at Digital Humanities Quarterly. It’s part of a substantial, and I believe, important issue on the future of Undergraduate Education. Read more about the issue here.

Teaching Electronic Literature as Digital Humanities: A Proposal” presents an approach to teaching Digital Humanities through two largely unexplored lenses: electronic literature and foreign languages (Spanish in particular). It offers a practical example of a course taught during the Spring of 2016 at UC Berkeley that combines literary analysis with the teaching of basic programming skills, and DH tools and methods. Concretely, this course is an upper division, undergraduate writing intensive class, where students learn how to write and talk about electronic literature (e.g. hypertext novels, kinetic poetry, automatic generators, social media fictions, etc.), learning specific terminology and theoretical frameworks, as they gain the skills to build their own digital art pieces in a collaborative workshop setting. By taking this course as a practical example, this essay tackles three important pillars in the humanities. First, the overall concept of literature, and more specifically, the literary; second, what we understand by literary studies at the university; and third, and more broadly, what constitutes cultural (beyond technical) literacy in the twenty–first century. This essay’s final claim is that teaching e-it as DH effectively address all three.

Secondly, my colleague Scott Rettberg from the University of Bergen and myself were recently awarded a Peder Sather Center for Advanced Study grant for a joint research and collaboration project focused on Electronic Literature as a Digital Humanities framework. As part of the grant, Scott will be visiting Berkeley this Fall (more here and here), and I will be traveling to Norway in the Spring. We are also convening a workshop at Berkeley on April 5-6, 2018, with other invited e-lit scholars from California and Europe. The overall project is intended to encourage research and curriculum development across academic disciplines as well as investigate how disciplinary context affects our understanding of literary artefacts made for digital media.

Interested in DH? Love e-lit? Stay tuned for more! <3