(Re)presenting Humanity at the Margins: Curating and Visualizing Cultural Memory in the Digital Humanities

We Live in a time of Black and Brown erasure, even as emergent digital technologies are lauded as promising tools for visibility, mobilization, and liberation. As researchers in a digitized and interconnected world - where the boundaries between our virtual and "real life" contexts are increasingly blurred and where our understanding of our humanity is constantly mediated through digital artifacts and too.s - we are presented with pressing questions:

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Art in Public

This seminar explores art’s public presence in the United States from the late nineteenth century to the present. Class sessions will consider works ranging from monumental sculptures and murals to performances and ephemeral expression, focusing on how various audiences have understood, valued, and contested the “use” of art in their public lives. Through readings, discussions and visits to sites around the Bay Area, we will investigate how place and community might instantiated in, formulated through, or defamiliarized by artworks.

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Digital Ancient Near East

Today, much of the information we gather on any topic comes from Internet sources. The goal of this class is to increase students' skills in critically evaluating the scholarly value of information on the Ancient Near East that is to be found in web pages, e-journals, and online books. We will consider the goal and context of sources of information (touristic, commercial, scholarly, religious, etc.) and how this influences and filters the information provided. Although the class will focus on Internet resources, we will not neglect to use the same critical eye when using print media.

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How Does History Count? Exploring Japanese-American Internment through Digital Sources

On February 19, 1942, Executive Order 9066 authorized the detention of around 110,000 people of Japanese descent, most of them American citizens living on the west coast. On the basis of ethnicity alone, having committed no crime, and given no trial, they were stripped of their rights and forcibly relocated to several detention centers, where they lived for up to four years surrounded by barbed wire and watched by armed guards. Many documents, images, and other materials that survive from this terrible episode of U.S. history are now available online. In this data science connector course, students will learn emerging digital methods for conducting historical research, which they will apply to the study of Japanese-American Internment. Classroom exercises will be hands-on and involve working directly with primary sources, using and expanding upon skills learned in the Foundations of Data Science class.

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Humanities Methods in Ethnic Studies

The course provides an introduction to basic theoretical approaches to the literary and other cultural productions of ethnic or "minority" communities in the United States. It also involves the study of important writings by Latina/o, Native American, African American, Asian American, and mixed race writers, and to a lesser degree, the visual art production of these same communities. The course will focus with particular care on discourses of racialization, gender, and sexuality.

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Intro to Digital Humanities: From Analog to Digital

Learning new technology & computational tools can be intimidating, especially in the humanities. In this introductory course students will learn how to design personalized research projects for data-based analysis and bring your work to the public eye in stunning visual narratives. Over the semester, the class will dig into the available museum and library collections (both locally and online) to design and curate digital data-bases.Students in this course will work both individually and as groups (with peer-review) to form empirical research projects.

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Slavery and Conspiracy

This is a multidisciplinary seminar on the law and literature of slave conspiracy. Students will be reading novels and stories by authors such as Martin Delany and Herman Melville alongside contemporary newspapers, confessions, warrants, witness depositions, and trial transcripts. The course will also be reading history and theory by Peter Brooks, Gwendolyn Midlo Hall, Jill Lepore, Michel-Rolph Trouillot, and Gordon Wood. Students will choose between writing a research paper and working on a collaborative digital project related to one of the conspiracies covered in the course.

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Text Analysis for Digital Humanists and Social Scientists

Increasingly, humanity’s cultural material is being captured and stored in the form of electronic text. From historical documents, literature and poems, diaries, political speeches, and government documents, to emails, text messages, and social media, students from the humanities and social sciences now have access to immense amounts of rich, and diverse, text. This course will introduce students to cutting edge ways of structuring, analyzing, and interpreting digitized text-as-data, and will do so by exploring questions fundamental to the humanities and social sciences.

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Humanists on the Move

This class is about Renaissance humanists and how we can use digital means, as well as traditional ones, to study them. Our particular focus is on the ways people were connected in the renaissance -- as patrons, as readers, as travelers, as correspondents. Students will gather data about the travels and connections of their individual humanists. Then, working in groups, they will form databases and use mapping and network analysis on their data to chart interconnections between these historical figures over time.

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