Class Times

M 1:25p – 4:25p
T 1:25p –  2:50p
W 1:25p – 4:25p
R 10:10a – 12:10p & 1:25p – 2:50p

This project-based course explores how digital media changes the ways we study culture and ideas (syllabus). We’ll examine how technologies enable new forms of research and publishing not possible through print. Plus, we’ll discuss what is meant by “the digital” and how it impacts your careers.

The projects for this course will focus on aspects of literary history related to Washington and Lee University. The library recently acquired a collection of unpublished letters that Ezra Pound, a major literary figure of the 20th century, wrote to a W&L student in the 1950s. You’ll have the opportunity to work directly with this rare material by using data visualization and network analysis to chart the correspondence of Ezra Pound and his influence on the production of literary journals including Shenandoah, published by W&L. The projects will result in a Web site that showcases the knowledge and skills you have learned in this course. Your Web site also will become part of a larger site that contributes to the study of literary history.

No prior skills required. Through this course you will learn the skills needed for the project. A highlight of the class will be a series of graduate students from the University of Virginia who will visit W&L and serve as teaching assistants for this course.  These graduate students are all working on their doctoral degrees in either English or History and have participated as fellows in the Scholars’ Lab, which is a premier center for the study of the digital humanities. In the first week of class we also will take a trip up to Charlottesville and spend the day at the Scholars’ Lab.

Course Learning Objectives

  • Understand the essentials of digital humanities, including its history and most popular (or most controversial) standards and applications.
  • Understand the theory and practice of digital humanities.
  • The ability to think critically about various standards, applications, and tools.
  • Develop technical skills and competencies for understanding and creating a digital 
humanities project.
  • Collaborate on research in a field that has traditionally privileged individual scholarship