Digital Shakespeare in Swansea: 16 May 2011

May 14, 2011

Digital Shakespeare
Monday 16 May 2011

Workshop and Talks

SWANSEA UNIVERSITY – 4th floor Small Talk Room, Faraday Building

Organised by Dr David M. Berry and Dr Tom Cheesman

Few dispute that digital technology is fundamentally changing the way in which we engage in the research process. Indeed, it is becoming more and more evident that research is increasingly being mediated through digital technology. Many argue that this mediation is slowly beginning to change what it means to undertake research, affecting both the epistemologies and ontologies that underlie a research programme (sometimes conceptualised as ‘close’ versus ‘distant’ reading, see Moretti 2000). Of course, this development is variable depending on disciplines and research agendas, with some more reliant on digital technology than others, but it is rare to find an academic today who had no access to digital technology as part of the research activity and there remain fewer means for the non-digital scholar to undertake research in the modern university (see JAH 2008) – not to mention the ubiquity of email, Google searches and bibliographic databases which become increasingly crucial as more of the world’s libraries are scanned and placed online. These, of course, also produce their own specific problems, such as huge quantities of articles, texts and data suddenly available at the researcher’s fingertips, indeed, “It is now quite clear that historians will have to grapple with abundance, not scarcity. Several million books have been digitized…and nearly every day we are confronted with a new digital historical resource of almost unimaginable size” (Daniel J Cohen in JAH 2008).

In this workshop we will look at how we might use the new digital tools of text aggregation, processing and information or data visualisation to provide new ways of looking at and thinking about the works of Shakespeare. From making data patterns, to narrativising through algorithms and visualisation, we aim to examine how these approaches and methods can assist in undertaking humanities research into textual materials.


11.30-12.00    Registration (4th floor Small Talk Room, Faraday Building)

12 noon:    Introduction and Welcome (David Berry)

12.15-12.50:    The Swansea VVV Project: Visualising Version Variation (Tom Cheesman)

13.00-13.45:    Understanding through Visualisation (Stephan Thiel, Potsdam)

13.45-14.00:    Coffee Break

14.00-14.30:    Shakespeare in Arabic (Sameh Hanna, Salford)

14.30-15.00:    Visualising Textual Corpora (Geng Zhao, Swansea University)

15.15-16.15:    Computational Information Design  (Stephan Thiel, Potsdam)

16.15:    Reflections on the workshop (Tom Cheesman, Robert S. Laramee)

16.45:    Ends

There is no charge for the workshop but as space is limited please email d.m.berry@Swansea.ac.uk if you are interested in attending.

Funded by Swansea University Research Institute for Arts and Humanities (RIAH)

Visit the webpage for this event here.


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