Providing resources and trai­ning in the practices and tools of the digital humanities

Keynote Talks


T-Kay Sangwand, Human Rights Archivist, University of Texas Libraries, Human Rights Documentation Initiative

Decolonizing archival practice and diversifying the historical record through post-custodial human rights archiving
Friday, September 25, 5:00pm
​Watson Library, 3 West

Over the past twenty years, archival discourse has shifted from embracing objectivity and neutrality as core professional values to rightfully questioning how these values negatively impact archival practice and the historical record. While this turn in archival discourse has compelled archives to expand its collection scope to include materials of and from communities historically marginal to archival endeavors, there are still relatively few examples of archival repositories that actively challenge the physical collection of materials from these groups, an act rooted in neo/colonial history and practice. This talk will address how the implementation of post-custodial archiving within human rights contexts can respond to historical inequities by empowering community ownership of their own archives and collective memory as well as ensuring a robust historical record. ​


Kim Christen Withey, Director of the Digital Technology and Culture Program and Co-Director of the Center for Digital Scholarship and Curation

"Push Pause: Slowing down digital humanities practices"
Saturday, September 26, 9:00am
​Hall Center for the Humanities

The digital humanities has its roots in fields of study dedicated to textual analysis and historical examination. The present moment is filled with DH practitioners creating visualizations of ‘big data,’ mapping connections between people and ancient cities, and building archives dedicated to long-dead authors. DH projects flourish in collaborations across disciplines and at the intersections of technology and humanistic inquiry. Yet despite the "h" in DH we often get caught up in technocentric discourses that prompt us to produce more, "scale" our projects, increase our "users." In this talk, I encourage us to pause, reflect, slow down and bring back an emphasis on building relationships as central to the practices of digital humanities.


Anita Say Chan, Assistant Research Professor of Communications, University of Illinois

"Networking Peripheries: Technological Futures, Digital Memory and the Myth of Digital Universalism"
Saturday, September 26, 4:15pm
​Hall Center for the Humanities

Channeling the promise global interconnection, and framed as the mark of contemporary optimization, “the digital” has come to represent the path towards the future for diverse nations, economies, and populations alike. In the midst of its accelerating pursuits across distinct global spaces, however, little has been made of the “universalist” underpinnings that mobilize digitality’s global spread, or of the distinct imaginaries around digital culture and global connection that emerge outside the given centers of techno-culture. This paper will attend to experiments in innovation spaces from the periphery, including the development of rural hack lab spaces in Peru, that distinctly engage local histories and memory of knowledge work around nature, technology, and information to disrupt the dominant logics of innovation and reorient ICT for Development (ICT4D) frameworks. By fostering collaborations between Latin American free software activists across a range of rural and urban site, and between transnational media producers and indigenous communities, such networks press a cosmopolitcal urging to “think with the unknown,” and open up possibilities for uncovering distinct collective futures through an interfacing with multiple local pasts.