Session Proposal: Educational technology in language and culture acquisition:

We want to exchange ideas about educational technology in language and cultural acquisition. Using our peer language tandem web platform, as an example, we will share our own experiences with transnational peer learning. We want to encourage discussion and debate about technology as enrichment (rather than replacement) of the classroom, deep internationalization, and teaching and learning across cultural difference.

LinguaeLive is a free web platform founded by Professor Jennifer Ruth Hosek in Languages, Literatures and Cultures at Queen’s University that is being developed by a team including Mayu Takasaki, also of Languages, Literatures and Cultures.

LinguaeLive allows teachers to connect their students to practice each other’s languages in peer e-tandems. The site allows any instructor to connect with colleagues teaching complementary language classes across the globe. These instructors can then link their students for peer-to-peer communication. can help students improve their language and cultural skills and make connections abroad and therefore is an excellent example of the use of technology to enhance transnational teaching and learning.

This session is proposed by Dr. Jennifer Hosek and Dr. Mayu Takasaki of the Languages, Literature, and Cultures Department at Queen’s.

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Social media and confession

In the History of Sexuality vol. 1, Foucault argued that rather than living in the shadows of a repressive history– a Victorian hangover that can only be cured by the soothing tonic of free discussion and disclosure–we are living in an age defined by confession. Bipower runs on the self-disciplining apparatus of personal confession at every level, personal and institutional.  He was writing, obviously, well before twitter, tumblr and Facebook. I’m interested in how Foucault’s analysis holds up in the age of social media. Certainly, distinct types of disclosures are encouraged on different media platforms. In my research on youth online trauma autobiography, I’ve found that tumblr is often the online venue of choice for suicide notes, while youtube is the venue of choice for inspirational stories of triumph after trauma. One of the most troubling things I’ve found are that there are a number of youth who have made youtube videos about how they overcame bullying–either in an “It Gets Better” video or a “My Secret’s” Video–only to later commit suicide and leave a note on tumblr that said, it really never got better and I never thought it would. What type of pressures were they under in each case to tell their story in a particular way? Sometimes disclosures online are literally life threatening for bullied youth, and yet youth risk it. I’ve seen over 30 youth end their videos by saying some variation on: “No one is here for me, I am here for you. If you ever need anything. Contact me.”

Broadly, I wonder how and why various social media platforms facilitate certain types of personal disclosures and subject postions and exclude others. How do disciplining apparatuses work online? What is the interplay between dominant discourse, personal agency and internet disclosures. Are we online confessing because we are disciplined to confess, and if so, is there room here for (r)evolution and resistance? Is it possible to create powerful counter-narratives? Is that what the youth who say “I am being hurt and I will risk anything to stop you from hurting” are doing? I hope a discussion on this will lead to some excellent conversation.

Categories: Social Media | 1 Comment

Session proposal – Digital Tools and Dissertation Work

I would like to propose a session to discuss the ways in which different digital tools could be incorporated into both the research and dissemination of a dissertation. I already take advantage of things like online text databases, digitized images, and cloud storage but I’d like to hear what everyone else finds handy in their everyday workflow and if they have any thoughts on what might be useful in the way of technology for the final product. A few of the possibilities I’ve been contemplating are an annotated e-book, an accompanying image database, or the use of 3-d modeling. As an early modern art historian working on text and images, I am interested in finding methods of dissemination that allow for greater reader interaction and which play with the relationship between text and image. I imagine this panel to be a swapping of tips and experiences between scholars of varying DH skill levels and at different points in their academic careers.

Categories: General, Publishing, Research Methods | 1 Comment

[Session Proposal] Online Databases in the Humanities: Organizational Obstacles and Collaborative Solutions

We, Clare Barker, Mitchell King and Ian Longo, propose a talk session to discuss the issues of multiple online databases of texts in Digital Humanities.  The field of Classics was an early adopter (in the ’70s and ’80s) of textual databases as a tool for research, and the problem of text being stored in unlinked databases was encountered early on.  Collaboration in several cases (e.g. has significantly improved the utility of the databases and increased the efficiency of textual research.  The collaboration of the Duke Data Bank, Heidelberger Gesamtverzeichnis Der Griechischen Papyrusurkunden Ägyptens (HGV), the Advanced Papyrological Information System (APIS), Bibliographie Papyrologique (BP), and Trismegistos in is a very useful and successful model for a database that accrues the majority of the published texts in a specific discipline.  In contrast, the databases for epigraphy are less united and have been more problematic for users, such as The Packard Humanities Institutes Epigraphic databases (still a work in progress).  We hope that this talk session can look at a variety of databases in different disciplines, identify the sorts of projects that have been successful, and propose future directions.

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[Session Proposal] Hidden Traces: A look beneath the threshold with Multi-Spectral Imaging

You may or may not be cursed! Allow us, in our play/talk session, to take you beyond what visible light can show you, and experience the secrets that Ultraviolet Reflectography and Infrared Photography can uncover. Let us; Ian E. Longo, Mitchell King and Clare Barker demonstrate the different uses of this technology that we are familiar with such as enhancing the legibility of text on ancient papyri and ostraka, exposing text in historic manuscripts that has been erased from history and revealing underdrawings never meant to be seen in valuable oil paintings.

Most of these techniques, before being adapted to archeology and art history, were used in the fields of dermatology and forensic investigations. In our demonstration we will be able to show you some of these applications as well. We hope that this will inspire you to join us in discussion of future applications of these digital techniques.

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Web-publishing Tools, Collaboration, Skills Development, and Project Management

I would like to propose a session on some of the open-source, web-based, web-publishing tools available that bridge cultural, scholarly, library and museum worlds, such as the open source platforms, Omeka, and Mukurtu. My own interest in this session is to situate myself as a beginner technology user who would like to play and talk with other people about their interest/experiences with these tools. As a literary researcher and student archivist working with the personal papers of Zimbabwean author Yvonne Vera, I am interested in utilizing these tools to create an online resource for scholars interested where I hope to publish her archival finding aid, publicize an upcoming conference on her works, plan for collaborative digitization projects, and create a digital scholarly edition of her unpublished manuscript. Relevant discussion topics may include collaboration and project management, crowdsourcing, digital communities and cultural heritage, archives and collections, digital scholarly editions and research methods. I am hoping that this session offers a nice compliment to Heather Home and Jeremy Heil’s session on the role of Archives in DH projects.

Categories: Archives, Collaboration, Crowdsourcing, Digital Literacy, General, Libraries, Museums, Open Access, Project Management, Publishing, Research Methods, Scholarly Editions, Session Proposals | Comments Off on Web-publishing Tools, Collaboration, Skills Development, and Project Management

Session Proposal – Fostering DH research: what’s an archives to do?

Jeremy Heil and I propose to talk about the role of Archives in DH projects and research. Primary sources are often the focus of much digital humanities work through digitization, transcription or analysis and as such we are interested in (1) sharing what the Archives has done to date and (2) asking how the Archives can do more to foster this research. We plan on talking about a few digital initiatives and projects we have been involved with, such as one of the first “machine-readable” finding aids for the Lorne Pierce collection of Canadiana, to a current and ongoing digitization project using the George Whalley papers. We wish to engage with the participants, utilizing them as a focus group, about their impressions and opinions regarding the roles that institutional repositories can, or should, play in the field of digital humanities.

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Thesaurus Linguae Graecae and Infrared Photography

Clare joins us from Classics at Queen’s!

I would like to learn more about photography and photo manipulation (photoshop). I don’t have that many skills to share because I am just starting out with graduate work, but my project involves infra-red photography of ancient papyrus documents which allows the ink to be seen more clearly on the image than is possible in visible light. I also use online databases in my research. Currently I am considering the best way to catalogue/organize hundreds of images and descriptions of papyri. Becoming more proficient with technology in general would be excellent for me, and I am interested to see what other work people are doing with their research involving technology.

I am a graduate student at Queen’s University in Classics. My research is in papyrology and involves using infra-red photography to read damaged, stained and/or faded ink on papyrus. I have always admired those who have moved forward with projects seemingly ahead of their time: for example, in the Classics, the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae founded by Marianne McDonald (working with Theodore Brunner and David Packard) created a searchable database of Ancient Greek texts, begun in 1972!

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Paper Twitter and Hypertextual Social Critique

Marc has already proposed a fantastic session on a “paper Twitter” and we’re delighted that he will be bringing his research and brain to THATCamp QueensU all the way from Littératures francophones et résonances médiatiques at Concordia!

My name is Marc Rowley, and I am a Master’s student at Concordia University in Littératures francophones et résonances médiatiques. My thesis research surrounds the question of Twitter as a medium for social critique, specifically comparing and contrasting this hypertextual form to traditional media such as comedic novels, in order to identify commonalities and divergences in their practices and effects on readers. I hope to attend THATCamp to broaden my network of new media researchers, and to realize an artistic project: the creation of a “paper Twitter”, which will help participants, myself included, more clearly identify which structures on Twitter are universal properties of human communication, and which are inseparable from its hypertextual form….I entered the MA program in Littératures francophones et résonances médiatiques in September 2012, and have decided to focus my research on the social critique capacity of Twitter: specifically, to compare and contrast this type of critique with that found in literary forms throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, such as the comedic novel. Outside of school, my interests include theatre (both creation and consumption), writing (mostly essays, with some creative projects as well), eating locally, and lots (lots) of reading (from Tolkein to Rowling to Houllebecq)

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Documenting Community Involvement Online

Sarah joins us from English at Queen’s!

I am a third-year undergraduate student at Queen’s University, and especially enjoy studying literature from the Victorian Era. During the summer, I work for an organization that runs programs for children that involve literature and storytelling, and am involved in documenting their experiences online.

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