Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Applications Open for “Rebuilding the Portfolio: DH for Art Historians”

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

Join us July 7-18, 2014 for Rebuilding the Portfolio: DH for Art Historians, a summer institute at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History in New Media,supported by the Getty Foundation.

Rebuilding the Portfolio: DH for Art Historians is designed for 20 art historians, from different stages of their careers and from varied backgrounds, including faculty, curators, art librarians, and archivists who are eager to explore the digital turn in the humanities.

We seek applications from individuals who have had very limited or no training in using digital methods and tools, or in computing.

Take a peek at our proposed schedule, and apply today. Applications will be open until March 15, 2014.

Position announcement: Wikipedia Affiliate, Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

Position announcement: Wikipedia Affiliate, Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media

In conjunction with The Wikipedia Library project, the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM) at George Mason University is seeking applicants for a “Wikipedia Affiliate.” This is an unpaid, year-long, remote research position beginning March 1, 2014 and ending February 28, 2015 that entitles the affiliate to full library privileges at George Mason University, including proxied access to all online materials to which the GMU Libraries subscribe: more than 400 databases, thousands of scholarly journals and mainstream periodicals, and hundreds of ebooks. The position is designed to give research library access to a Wikipedia editor who does not currently have such access or who has only limited access to scholarly resources: the purpose of the position is to help improve Wikipedia’s reliability and accuracy by providing Wikipedia editors with access to the best scholarly information resources while providing a model for other universities to do likewise.

Qualifications

The affiliate will be an experienced Wikipedia editor with at least one year of regular activity contributing to Wikipedia on historical topics in any field, region, or period. The affiliate will also be a thorough researcher who is committed to improving Wikipedia articles by consulting and citing reliable, scholarly sources and who is a lucid writer of text for Wikipedia encyclopedia articles on historical topics. An undergraduate or graduate degree in History, Art History, or a related discipline is desirable but not required.

Position Description and Duties

During the affiliate year, the affiliate will conduct scholarly research using the library resources of George Mason University with the aim of significantly improving the accuracy and reliability at least 25 Wikipedia articles on historical topics, preferably articles within a particular historical scope (for example: modern Russian and Soviet history, U.S. Civil War history, the history of late imperial China). Near the end of the affiliate year, the affiliate will write a brief report listing the Wikipedia articles he or she has contributed to and improved over the course of the year, describing how his or her access to GMU library resources has helped increase the reliability of Wikipedia on this topic and analyzing whether the affiliate program could serve as a model for other universities. The affiliate will also be asked to give a brief talk on the same subject to RRCHNM, either in person or via a remote technology such as Skype.

Application Instructions

To apply, please send the following documents to Dr. Amanda French at ude.u1414799379mg@5h1414799379cnerf1414799379a1414799379 by January 20, 2014:

1. A standard résumé or curriculum vitae that also includes

  • a link to your Wikipedia profile and
  • at least three links to Wikipedia articles on historical topics that you have contributed to.

2. A cover letter that includes

  • a description of your background, including why you contribute to Wikipedia and what level of historical expertise and interest you have in which fields, regions, or periods;
  • a summary of what access you currently have (or don’t have) to research materials such as databases and scholarly journals;
  • an explanation of why you want to become a Wikipedia Affiliate to RRCHNM; and
  • a brief outline of the historical topic(s) and/or specific Wikipedia articles you would focus on during your affiliate year.

All applicants will be notified of the outcome of the search by the end of February 2014. The affiliate year will begin March 1, 2014.

About the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media

Since 1994 under the founding direction of Roy Rosenzweig, the Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM) at George Mason University has used digital media and computer technology to democratize history—to incorporate multiple voices, reach diverse audiences, and encourage popular participation in presenting and preserving the past. The center itself is a democratic, collaborative space where over fifty scholars, technologists, and researchers work together to advance the state of the art.

RRCHNM uses digital media and technology to preserve and present history online, transform scholarship across the humanities, and advance historical education and understanding. Each year RRCHNM’s many project websites receive over 20 million visitors, and over a million people rely on its digital tools to teach, learn, and conduct research.

George Mason University is a public research university located approximately 14 miles from Washington, D.C., with over 30,000 students. Global education and research are a fundamental part of the university’s mission to serve its diverse and international student body. RRCHNM is part of the Department of History and Art History.

About The Wikipedia Library

The Wikipedia Library connects Wikipedia editors with libraries, open access resources, paywalled databases, and research experts. We are working together towards 5 big goals that create an open hub for conducting research:

  • 
Connect editors with their local library and freely accessible resources
  • 
Partner to provide free access to paywalled publications, databases, universities, and libraries
  • 
Build relationships among our community of editors, libraries, and librarians
  • 
Facilitate research for Wikipedians, helping editors to find and use sources
  • Promote broader open access in publishing and research

The Wikipedia Affiliate to RRCHNM position is based on the Wikipedia Visiting Scholar idea suggested by Peter Suber at the Harvard Open Access Project.

Celebrate 20 Years of RRCHNM in November 2014

Monday, December 16th, 2013

Plans are taking shape for the upcoming conference to mark the 20th anniversary of the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media, November 14-­15, 2014. The conference will reflect the spirit of THATCamp: the first day will be spent hacking the history of RRCHNM, working collectively to tell the story of how projects were created and what they tell us about digital history’s past. The second day will feature short talks by invited guests, each followed by extended discussion, and unconference­-style breakout sessions.

We’re thrilled that Edward Ayers, Brett Bobley, and Bethany Nowviskie have agreed to share their thoughts on the future of digital humanities centers, while Tim Hitchcock, William Thomas, Kathryn Tomasek and a collective of GMU graduate students will offer visions of the future of digital history. We’re inviting all the fantastic folks who have worked with and at RRCHNM over the past two decades to celebrate with us.

You only turn 20 once, and we want to do this right. So, in 2014 we will focus on the 20th anniversary events. This means a hiatus for THATCamp Prime in 2014, but we’re already talking about ideas for 2015.

The 20th anniversary event is free and registration will open in early 2014. In the coming months, we will post additional information to the RRCHNM blog and tweet updates from @chnm, tagged #rrchnm20. We hope to see many of you in November.

Happy Anniversary, PressForward!

Thursday, November 7th, 2013

Happy Anniversary, PressForward! Funded by the Alfred P. Sloan foundation and based at George Mason University’s Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media, the PressForward project was born two years ago with a mission to showcase the varied, dynamic, and provocative digital humanities scholarship published on the open web. To do this, the project has developed and nurtured two publications: Digital Humanities Now (DHNow) and the Journal of Digital Humanities (JDH). Those periodicals work hand in hand to surface gray literature and, at the same time, act as an experiment in open access publication. DHNow, developed four years ago and then relaunched as part of the PressForward initiative, is now published twice a week. Three times a year, JDH publishes a volume of articles culled from the material surfaced through DHNow, conferences, and other little-noticed online sources.  In addition, PressForward has been working to develop the tools necessary to disseminate literature that benefits digital humanities communities. We’ve worked to put those tools in the hands of groups like dh+lib, and watched with excitement as their publications grew.

The result of these efforts is a community of participants and practitioners that offer their time and talents each and every week. JDH and DHNow represent the labors of 175 editors, 100 authors, and ten faculty and graduate student staff members. But this anniversary, we also want to celebrate the readers that come to our sites each and every day. In 2013 alone, DHNow has seen more than 320,00 visits and 834,000 page views. During the month of October, more than ten thousand unique visitors came to that site. Though it is published far less frequently, JDH has seen more than 127,000 visits this year, with more than 414,00 page views. In September, it was able to keep pace with DHNow, welcoming nearly ten thousand unique visitors. If our research reveals anything, it’s the vibrancy and generosity of digital humanities communities.

In celebration of those communities, this second anniversary will see the launch of an outreach campaign that will bring you more detail about our methods. We’ve already redesigned the DHNow website for easier reading and participation, particularly with a new Editors-at-Large Corner. Through blog posts like this one, we’ll be sharing our research and conclusions. And this spring, we’ll roll out the PressForward WordPress plugin, a tool designed to make the task of curating and aggregating gray literature easier and more accessible, in hopes that this is only the beginning of the projects and publications that PressForward makes possible.

Be sure to watch @pressfwd for project updates and check out @dhnow and @journalofdh to follow digital humanities scholarship!

THATCamp Leadership & participad | DH Fellow’s Blog

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

Ben Hurwitz (2nd year Digital History Fellow)

On Thursday October 10, the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media and George Mason University welcomed DH’ers from around the globe to THATCamp Leadership 2013. For those of you who don’t know, THATCamp (The Humanities and Technology Camp) is an unconference series which was first held at George Mason in 2008. Since then, regional THATCamps have sprung up across the country and across several continents as well, hosted by universities or local DH communities.

THATCamp Leadership, generously sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, was quite different from a typical THATCamp. The invitation-only event partnered experienced THATCamp facilitators with academic and institutional leaders to discuss the future of THATCamp and the Digital Humanities generally. As a result, there were very few tech-centered sessions. Instead, broader session titles like “Building DH Locally,” “Sustaining and Altering THATCamp,” and “Digital Humanities and Online Education” predominated.

In the spirit of collaboration, THATCamp Leadership 2013 debuted a cooperative “notepad” space for recording discussions. Using participad, a WordPress plugin, the DH fellows at CHNM created notepads for each sessions and served as dedicated note-takers. Participants could view and edit their sessions notepads, or view another session’s notepad in order to follow discussions elsewhere in the conference. While some participants preferred to tweet, take notes on paper, or just focus on listening, we did have some encouraging contributions which added to the richness of the record. To view our notes from all of the sessions, look here, and feel free to comment as well.

George Mason University is Hiring a Digital Historian

Monday, October 21st, 2013

The George Mason University, Department of History and Art History invites applications for a tenure-track position in Digital History at the rank of Assistant Professor. While the historical field is open, candidates must have the ability to teach digital theory and methods at the undergraduate and graduate level, including a graduate course in programming (PHP, Python, Perl, Javascript, XML, for example). The teaching load is 2-2. Ph.D. must be in hand by August 2014.

George Mason University is a public research university located 14 miles from Washington, D.C., with approximately 30,000 students. The Department of History and Art History has a strong record of scholarly research and is home to the award-winning Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media. The department also has the largest M.A. program in the country and a nationally ranked Ph.D. program.

Special Instructions to Applicants
For full consideration, please apply for position number F5343z at http://jobs.gmu.edu/. Complete the online faculty application and upload a letter of interest, CV, and a writing sample and/or a link to a digital project. Letters of reference should be sent separately to Professor Paula Petrik, Chair, Digital History Search, Department of History and Art History, George Mason University, MSN 3G1, 4400 University Drive, Fairfax, VA 22030. Review of applications will begin on November 15, 2013, and continue until the position is filled.

 

PressForward Editors-at-Large | DH Fellow’s Blog

Monday, October 14th, 2013

Amanda Morton (2nd year Digital History Fellow)

This semester the second year Digital History Fellows are sticking with one of the three divisions at RRCHNM (Research, Education, Public Projects) and participating in selected projects within those divisions. Some of us are coming in at the start of a new set of projects, while others are joining projects already in progress. There’s a certain benefit, I think, to being able to join a project in mid-flow and provide both an extra pair of hands and the type of feedback that comes from a fresh look at ongoing processes. By essentially acting as full-time floaters, we can also lend work hours and a different set of opinions to changes already set in motion,

I’ve been assigned to the Research Division this semester, directed by Sean Takats, and am currently spending the majority of my time working under Joan Fragaszy Troyano on the PressForward project. This project received an influx of graduate research assistants this semester, most of whom were, like myself, new to the division and to PressForward, and needed to be introduced to the way the different parts of the project are managed, particularly the weekly management of Digital Humanities Now.

A PressForward publication, Digital Humanities Now is a community-driven aggregator that calls upon volunteers to nominate content, then curates and publishes the best blog posts and news stories coming out of the DH community. One element of the management equation for DHNow, the way Editors-in-Chief communicate with and organize information for the Editors-at-Large — volunteers who nominate content for Digital Humanities Now — needed to be re-worked and streamlined to accommodate the addition of several new Graduate Research assistants to the project. This effort was also undertaken with an eye toward making the management of Editors-at-Large easier to share with groups using DHNow as a model for their own projects.

As a DH Fellow I was able to lend a hand to this redesign, working alongside Jeri Wieringa, one of the original PressForward GRAs who has a great deal of experience working with Editors-at-Large and organizing the associated data. The redesign that launched at the end of September includes a new section of the DHNow website that we’ve called our “Editors’ Corner,” designed to help Editors-at-Large choose and nominate content using the PressForward plugin, keep track of the weeks they’ve volunteered to edit, and provide feedback on the entire process. The changes we’ve made also streamline the way the Editors-at-Large system works on the administration side, automating emails and organizing form data, as well as utilizing bulk-upload plugins to make new user creation for the DHNow site (required to allow Editors-at-Large to nominate items using the PressForward plugin) faster and easier to manage.

This streamlining involved a variety of adjustments to the existing processes, from simple changes like modifying the structure of the Editor-at-Large sign-up form to give each week its own column, to more complicated changes that involved writing and/or modifying Google Apps Scripts to automate informational emails and confirmation messages.

Additionally, we are in the process of creating sets of instructions for using this new system, as well as the portion of the DHNow site dedicated to Editors-at-Large (DHNow’s Editors-at-Large Corner), so that projects with similar requirements can adapt these techniques to their own needs. DHNow has and continues to rely on free and open access tools such as Google Spreadsheets and Forms, in addition to free WordPress plugins. Our goal in this is to enable other projects to easily access and adopt our processes for creating community run, aggregated publications.

In the end, we’ve created a system that we hope will be an accessible and easy to use example of how other groups or organizations might manage a similar project. I’m delighted to have had the chance to participate in this process, and I’d encourage anyone who hasn’t volunteered to be an Editor-at-Large for DHNow to sign up now, and if you have, sign up again and check out the new Editors-at-Large Corner!

Getty Foundation Funds a Digital Humanities Summer Institute for Art Historians at RRCHNM

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

The Getty Foundation recently awarded the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media a grant to organize and run a digital humanities summer institute for art historians in 2014. “Digital Humanities for Art Historians” will target art historians, from graduate students, to mid-career and senior scholars, from varied backgrounds, including faculty, curators, and established art librarians and archivists who are eager to move more deeply into the digital turn in the humanities.

Recognizing a significant need in this area, the Getty Foundation is sponsoring this project as part of a pilot initiative to support training workshops in digital art history. The Getty Foundation fulfills the philanthropic mission of the Getty Trust by supporting individuals and institutions committed to advancing the greater understanding and preservation of the visual arts in Los Angeles and throughout the world.

Project Co-Directors, Sheila Brennan and Sharon Leon are thrilled to be working with the Getty Foundation for the first time through this initiative and to be addressing issues specific to art historians together with fellow members of GMU’s History and Art History Department.

Applications for this summer institute will be announced in early 2014. Watch the RRCHNM blog, @chnm on Twitter, and major art history-related listservs for the call.

RRCHNM Welcomes Stephanie Westcott

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media are very happy to welcome Stephanie Westcott to our ranks as a Research Assistant Professor. Stephanie is a historian of U.S. popular culture, with a recent dissertation from University of Wisconsin, Madison titled “Producing Panic: Media, Morality, and American Sexuality, 1945–1970.” She spent last year teaching in the Democracy and justice Studies program at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. In addition to her research and teaching background, Westcott brings to RRCHNM her extensive and impressive professional experience working in the publishing industry at a small independent press and in public history. She will serve as a new project director on PressForward, working with Joan Troyano and Lisa Rhody.

Welcome Stephanie!

RRCHNM Graduate Students Organize Inaugural Rails Girls DH

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

Guest post by RRCHNM Graduate Research Assistants, Jeri Wieringa and Celeste Sharpe

As women graduate students working in digital humanities, we know first-hand the gender gap in our field. With few women programmers working in the digital humanities, and a lack of opportunities generally for women learning to code, there is a serious need for creative solutions to these systemic problems. Building on current conversations about the cultural and structural obstacles that make it difficult for women to learn to code, we decided to organize a workshop where women interested in programming could come together and learn.

rails_girls_dhOn September 7, forty-five people came together and participated in Rails Girls Digital Humanities at George Mason University. This one-day, intensive workshop combined the intellectual pursuits of humanities scholars with the structure of Rails Girls, an international movement of free workshops that introduce women to technology and programming through Ruby on Rails. This combination offers both an entry point for understanding the technology behind web applications as well as an opportunity to grow a community of academic women interested in the code that powers digital humanities scholarship.

Thirty women–undergraduate and graduate students, librarians and archivists, scholars and professors–from the DC metro area, Virginia, Boston, and California comprised our inaugural group. Nine coaches guided the participants throughout the workshop: Annie Swafford, Brandon Walsh, Jeremy Boggs, and Wayne Graham from the University of Virginia’s Scholars’ Lab; Jim Smith from University of Maryland’s Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities; and Patrick Murray-John from Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media along with local professional developers Jason Wieringa, Karen Gillison, and Sean Marcia. Together, the participants and coaches hacked their way through a day of talks and coding sprints, building a mapping application and discussing various way to incorporate code with humanities scholarship.

We are very grateful for the enthusiastic support we received from the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media, the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities, the Association for Computers in the Humanities, George Mason’s History and Art History Department and Provost’s Office, the American Association of University Women, and GitHub. Their support, as well as the positive responses from both participants and coaches, has reinforced our commitment to this approach for creating coding opportunities for women in the humanities. Building on this experience, we will further refine the model of Rails Girls and plan to offer additional workshops to continue to expand the opportunities for academic women interested in code.

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Since 1994, the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University has used digital media and computer technology to democratize history—to incorporate multiple voices, reach diverse audiences, and encourage popular participation in presenting and preserving the past. We sponsor more than two dozen digital history projects and offer free tools and resources for historians. Learn More

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