Digital Humanities with Professor Johanna Drucker

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25 March 2014

Time: 6:30pm
Venue: ArtsTwo Lecture Theatre, ArtsTwo Building, Mile End

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Visualizing Temporality: Modelling Time from the Textual Record

What does time look like? We are all familiar with the standard timeline that measures out events with neat tick-marks, like the divisions on a ruler. Yet whilst very few of us really think about the past in this sort of methodical way, the tools we use in the digital realm impose an artificial sense of order and regularity to the unfolding of events. Taking an eighteenth-century reference work, Edmund Fry’s Pantographia, as her case study, Professor Drucker will examine the various overlapping frameworks that authors use when assembling and organizing historical events. Her lecture will argue that the development of digital tools must be guided by humanities scholars if we are to represent the human past faithfully.

Johanna Drucker is the inaugural Breslauer Professor of Bibliographical Studies in the Department of Information Studies at UCLA. She is internationally known for her work in the history of graphic design, typography, experimental poetry, fine art, and digital humanities. In addition, she has a reputation as a book artist, and her limited edition works are in special collections and libraries worldwide. Her most recent titles include SpecLab: Digital Aesthetics and Speculative Computing (Chicago, 2009), and Graphic Design History: A Critical Guide (Pearson, 2008, 2nd edition late 2012). She is currently working on a database memoire, ALL, the online Museum of Writing in collaboration with University College London and King's College London, and a letterpress project titled Stochastic Poetics. A collaboratively written work, Digital_Humanities, with Jeffrey Schnapp, Todd Presner, Peter Lunenfeld, and Anne Burdick is forthcoming from MIT Press.