Thursday, 21 September 2017

Digital Scholarship Seminar

The opening event of the Autumn 2017 series of Digital Scholarship Seminar takes place on Thursday 21 September at 1pm, and features a talk on digital representations of popular early modern poetry collections by Abigail Williams of the University of Oxford. Prof Williams discusses the Digital Miscellanies Index, a Leverhulme-funded online database which can be used to track the changing fortunes of poems, authors and genres in compilations published across the period 1580-1780. As ever, all are welcome.

1pm | Thursday 21 September 2017 | Moore Institute Room G010 | Facebook event page

Abigail Williams (St Peter’s College, University of Oxford)

Laugh and be fat: remapping the literary canon with the Digital Miscellanies Index.

The Digital Miscellanies Index is a Leverhulme-funded online database of popular early modern poetry collections, which can be used to track the changing fortunes of poems, authors and genres in compilations published across the period 1580-1780. As such, it offers a new data-driven reception history for literature of the era. In my talk I will discuss the evolution of the project over a decade, and the kinds of insights it has generated. The scale and range of the evidence collected in the DMI challenges many longstanding assumptions about authorship, anonymity, and reception.  But the project has also involved responding to problems and opportunities unimaginable when it began, and I will also use the talk to consider the changing landscape of digital humanities, and the challenges of creating flexible and sustainable resources.

 Abigail Williams is Professor of English Literature & Lord White Tutorial Fellow at St Peter’s College, University of Oxford. Her current research on eighteenth century literature includes focuses on ways in which books are creatively misread, and on the history of reading aloud in the home. Her new monograph, The Social Life of Books, is a study on the latter topic.

Location: Seminar Room GO10, Ground Floor, Hardiman Research Building    
Time:1:00 pm