African Studies, contrary to some accounts, is not a separate continent in the world of American higher education. Its intellectual borders touch those of economics, literature, history, philosophy, and art; its history is the story of the world, both ancient and modern. This is the clear conclusion of Africa and the Disciplines, a book that addresses the question: Why should Africa be studied in the American university?
This question was put to distinguished scholars in the social sciences and humanities, prominent Africanists who are also leaders in their various disciplines. Their responses make a strong and enlightening case for the importance of research on Africa to the academy.
Paul Collier's essay, for example, shows how studies of African economies have clarified our understanding of the small open economies, and contributed to the theory of repressed inflation and to a number of areas in microeconomics as well. Art historian Suzanne Blier uses the terms and concepts that her discipline has applied to Africa to analyze the habits of mind and social practice of her own field. Christopher L. Miller describes the confounding and enriching impact of Africa on European and American literary theory. Political scientist Richard Sklar outlines Africa's contributions to the study of political modernization, pluralism, and rational choice. These essays, together with others from scholars in history, anthropology, philosophy, and comparative literature, attest to the influence of African research throughout the curriculum.
For many, knowledge from Africa seems distant and exotic. These powerful essays suggest the contrary: that such knowledge has shaped the way in which scholars in various disciplines understand their worlds. Eloquent testimony to Africa's necessary place in the mainstream of American education, this book should alter the academy's understanding of the significance of African research, its definition of core and periphery in human knowledge.
"These essays are at once exceptionally thoughtful and remarkably comprehensive. Not only do they offer an unusually interesting overview of African studies; they are also striking for the depth and freshness of their insights. This is the sort of volume from which both seasoned regional experts and students stand to learn an enormous amount."—John Comaroff, University of Chicago
"These essays provide an important perspective on the evolution of African studies and offer insights into what Africa can mean for the different humanistic and social science disciplines. Many show in ingenious and subtle ways the enormous potential that the study of Africa has for confounding the main tenets of established fields. One could only hope that the strictures expressed here would be taken to heart in the scholarly world."—Robert L. Tignor, Princeton University
Through the work of leading African writers, artists, musicians and educators—from Nobel prizewinner Wole Soyinka to names hardly known outside their native lands—An African Voice describes the contributions of the humanities to the achievement of independence for the peoples of black Africa following the Second World War. While concentrating on cultural independence, these leading humanists also demonstrate the intimate connection between cultural freedom and genuine political economic liberty.
The Anthropology of Experience
Edited by Victor W. Turner and Edward M. Bruner University of Illinois Press, 1986 Library of Congress GN345.A58 1986 | Dewey Decimal 306.01
Fourteen authors, including many of the best-known scholars in the field,
explore how people actually experience their culture and how those experiences are expressed in forms as varied as narrative, literary work, theater, carnival, ritual, reminiscence, and life review. Their studies will be
of special interest for anyone working in anthropological theory, symbolic
anthropology, and contemporary social and cultural anthropology, and useful as well for other social scientists, folklorists, literary theorists, and philosophers.
Blow Up the Humanities
Toby Miller Temple University Press, 2012 Library of Congress LC1023.M56 2012 | Dewey Decimal 370.112
A short, sharp, and provocative book, Blow Up the Humanities has esteemed scholar Toby Miller declaring that there are two humanities in the United States. One is the venerable, powerful humanities of private universities; the other is the humanities of state schools, which focus mainly on job prospects. There is a class division between the two—both in terms of faculty research and student background—and it must end.
Miller critically lays waste to the system. He examines scholarly publishing as well as media and cultural studies to show how to restructure the humanities by studying popular cultural phenomena, like video games. Miller ultimately insists that these two humanities must merge in order to survive and succeed in producing an aware and concerned citizenry.
For years the subject of human disability has engaged those in the biological, social and cognitive sciences, while at the same time, it has been curiously neglected within the humanities. The Body and Physical Difference seeks to introduce the field of disability studies into the humanities by exploring the fantasies and fictions that have crystallized around conceptions of physical and cognitive difference. Based on the premise that the significance of disabilities in culture and the arts has been culturally vexed as well as historically erased, the collection probes our society's pathological investment in human variability and "aberrancy." The contributors demonstrate how definitions of disability underpin fundamental concepts such as normalcy, health, bodily integrity, individuality, citizenship, and morality--all terms that define the very essence of what it means to be human.
The book provides a provocative range of topics and perspectives: the absence of physical "otherness" in Ancient Greece, the depiction of the female invalid in Victorian literature, the production of tragic innocence in British and American telethons, the reconstruction of Civil War amputees, and disability as the aesthetic basis for definitions of expendable life within the modern eugenics movement. With this new, secure anchoring in the humanities, disability studies now emerges as a significant strain in contemporary theories of identity and social marginality.
Moving beyond the oversimplication that disabled people are marginalized and made invisible by able-ist assumptions and practices, the contributors demonstrate that representation is founded upon the perpetual exhibition of human anomalies. In this sense, all art can be said to migrate toward the "freakish" and the "grotesque." Such a project paradoxically makes disability the exception and the rule of the desire to represent that which has been traditionally out-of-bounds in polite discourse.
The Body and Physical Difference has relevance across a wide range of academic specialties such as cultural studies, the sociology of medicine, history, literature and medicine, the allied health professions, rehabilitation, aesthetics, philosophical discourses of the body, literary and film studies, and narrative theory.
David T. Mitchell is Assistant Professor of English, Northern Michigan University. Sharon L. Snyder teaches film and literature at Northern Michigan University.
The Precision Medicine Initiative, Apple’s HealthKit, the FitBit—the booming digital health industry asserts that digital networks, tools, and the scientific endeavors they support will usher in a new era of medicine centered around “the voice of the patient.” But whose “voices” do such tools actually solicit? And through what perspective will those voices be heard? Digital health tools are marketed as neutral devices made to help users take responsibility for their health. Yet digital technologies are not neutral; they are developed from an existing set of assumptions about their potential users and contexts for use, and they reflect dominant ideologies of health, dis/ability, gender, and race. Using patient-networking websites, the Quantified Self, and online breast cancer narratives, Communicative Biocapitalism examines the cultural, technological, economic, and rhetorical logics that shape the “voice of the patient” in digital health to identify how cultural understandings and social locations of race, gender, and disability shape whose voices are elicited and how they are interpreted.
In this book, Michael Brown provides original and critical analysis of the state of the social sciences and the humanities. He examines the different disciplines that address human affairs--from sociology, philosophy, political science, and anthropology to the humanities in general--to understand their common ground. He probes the ways in which we investigate the meaning of individuality in a society for which individuals are not the agents of the activities in which they participate, and he develops a critical method for studying the relations among activities, objects, and situations.
The Concept of the Social in Uniting the Humanities and Social Sciences restores the centrality of sociality to all disciplines that provide for and depend on the social dimension of human life. Ultimately, he establishes a theory of the unity of the human sciences that will surely make readers rethink the current state and future of theory in those fields for years to come.
Digital Samaritans explores rhetorical delivery and cultural sovereignty in the digital humanities. The exigence for the book is rooted in a practical digital humanities project based on the digitization of manuscripts in diaspora for the Samaritan community, the smallest religious/ethnic group of 770 Samaritans split between Mount Gerizim in the Palestinian Authority and in Holon, Israel. Based on interviews with members of the Samaritan community and archival research, Digital Samaritans explores what some Samaritans want from their diaspora of manuscripts, and how their rhetorical goals and objectives relate to the contemporary existential and rhetorical situation of the Samaritans as a living, breathing people.
How does the circulation of Samaritan manuscripts, especially in digital environments, relate to their rhetorical circumstances and future goals and objectives to communicate their unique cultural history and religious identity to their neighbors and the world? Digital Samaritans takes up these questions and more as it presents a case for collaboration and engaged scholarship situated at the intersection of rhetorical studies and the digital humanities.
Educating for Virtue
Joseph Baldacchino American Philanthropic, 1988 Library of Congress LA217.E365 1988 | Dewey Decimal 370.110973
In Educating for Virtue, five scholars address one of the most pressing issues of our time: the relationship between education and the development of moral character. With essays by Claes G. Ryn, Russell Kirk, Paul Gottfried, Peter J. Stanlis, Solveig Eggerz.
From the Foreword:
“If there is a single thread that runs through these essays, it is the recognition of a universal order that transcends the flux of human life and gives meaning to it. Insofar as men act in accordance with this order, they experience true happiness and are brought into community with others who are similarly motivated. But men are afflicted with contrary impulses that are destructive of universal order. When acted upon, these impulses bring suffering and a sense of meaninglessness and despair; the result is disintegration and conflict--within both the personality and society at large. Yet so tempting are the attactions of these impulses that they frequently prevail and must be taken into account in any realistic assessment of human affairs. This tension within the person between competing desires--the conflict between what Plato called the One and the Many--is the ultimate reality of human experience. To apprehend this reality, and to act in the light of the transcendent purpose with appropriate reverence and restraint, is the essence of wisdom; and to help deepen and strengthen this apprehension--through philosophy, history, literature, and the arts and sciences--is the overarching purpose of any education worthy of the name.”
In An Education in Judgment, philosopher D. N. Rodowick makes the definitive case for a philosophical humanistic education aimed at the cultivation of a life guided by both self-reflection and interpersonal exchange. Such a life is an education in judgment, the moral capacity to draw conclusions alone and with others, and in letting one’s own judgments be answerable to the potentially contrasting judgments of others. Thinking, for Rodowick, is an art we practice with and learn from each other all the time.
In taking this approach, Rodowick follows the lead of Hannah Arendt, who made judgment the cornerstone of her conception of community. What is important for Rodowick, as for Arendt, is the cultivation of “free relations,” in which we allow our judgments to be affected and transformed by those of others, creating “an ever-widening fabric of intersubjective moral consideration.” That is a fragile fabric, certainly, but one that Rodowick argues is worth pursuing, caring for, and preserving. This original work thinks with and beyond Arendt about the importance of the humanities and what “the humanities” amounts to beyond the walls of the university.
Humanities scholars, in general, often have a difficult time explaining to others why their work matters, and eighteenth-century literary scholars are certainly no exception. To help remedy this problem, literary scholars Bridget Draxler and Danielle Spratt offer this collection of essays to defend the field’s relevance and demonstrate its ability to help us better understand current events, from the proliferation of media to ongoing social justice battles.
The result is a book that offers a range of approaches to engaging with undergraduates, non-professionals, and broader publics into an appreciation of eighteenth-century literature. Essays draw on innovative projects ranging from a Jane Austen reading group held at the public library to students working with an archive to digitize an overlooked writer’s novel.
Reminding us that the eighteenth century was an exhilarating age of lively political culture—marked by the rise of libraries and museums, the explosion of the press, and other platforms for public intellectual debates—Draxler and Spratt provide a book that will not only be useful to eighteenth-century scholars, but can also serve as a model for other periods as well. This book will appeal to librarians, archivists, museum directors, scholars, and others interested in digital humanities in the public life.
Contributors: Gabriela Almendarez, Jessica Bybee, Nora Chatchoomsai, Gillian Dow, Bridget Draxler, Joan Gillespie, Larisa Good, Elizabeth K. Goodhue, Susan Celia Greenfield, Liz Grumbach, Kellen Hinrichsen, Ellen Jarosz, Hannah Jorgenson, John C. Keller, Naz Keynejad, Stephen Kutay, Chuck Lewis, Nicole Linton, Devoney Looser, Whitney Mannies, Ai Miller, Tiffany Ouellette, Carol Parrish, Paul Schuytema, David Spadafora, Danielle Spratt, Anne McKee Stapleton, Jessica Stewart, Colleen Tripp, Susan Twomey, Nikki JD White, Amy Weldon
How might the pornographic be associated with Brecht's and Benjamin's media theories? How are Foucault's and Deleuze's writings on visibilities "postcolonial"? What happens when Rancière's discussions of art are juxtaposed with cultural anthropology? What does a story by Lao She about collecting reveal about political collectivism in modern China? How does Girard's notion of mimetic violence speak to identity politics? How might Arendt's and Derrida's reflections on forgiveness be supplemented by a film by Lee Chang-dong? What can Akira Kurosawa's films about Japan say about American Studies? How is Asia framed transnationally, with what consequences for those who self-identify as Asian?
These questions are dispersively heterologous yet mutually implicated. This paradoxical character of their discursive relations is what Rey Chow intends with the word "entanglements," by which she means, first, an enmeshment of topics: the mediatized image in modernist reflexivity; captivation and identification; victimhood; the place of East Asia in globalized Western academic study. Beyond enmeshment, she asks, can entanglements be phenomena that are not defined by affinity or proximity? Might entanglements be about partition and disparity rather than about conjunction and similarity? Across medial forms (including theater, film, narrative, digitization, and photographic art), and against more popular trends of declaring things and people to be in flux, Chow proposes conceptual frames that foreground instead aesthetic, ontological, and sentient experiences of force, dominance, submission, fidelity, antagonism, masochism, letting-go, and the attraction to self-annihilation. Boundary, trap, capture, captivation, sacrifice, and mimesis: these riveting terms serve as analytic pressure points in her readings, articulating perversity, madness, and terror to pursuits of freedom.
The arts and sciences have evolved primarily through specialization and broadening of scope. Stepping outside of one’s established discipline, however, involves a danger of "shallowness," even if the primary challenge was a "deep" integration problem. All too often, current ways of defining academic disciplines and fields of research fail to do justice to new approaches—a problem this volume tackles as it debates the possible futures of scholarship and academia.
In The Future without a Past, John Paul Russo goes beyond currently given reasons for the decline of the humanities and searches out its root causes in the technologization of everyday life. His main premise is that we are undergoing a transformation at the hands of technological imperatives such as rationalization, universalism, monism, and autonomy. The relation between ourselves and nature has altered to such a degree that we no longer live in a natural environment but in a technological one. According to Russo, technological values have actually eroded human values instead of being “humanized” by them.
What are the implications of this shift for the humanities, traditionally seen as safeguards of the human? Russo addresses this question by situating the decline of the humanities within the larger social and historical panorama. He explores how technological values have infiltrated the humanities to the point of weakening their instruction and undermining their force; at the same time, he shows how the humanities have confronted these trends and can continue to do so. Russo believes that if we understand how technology “works” and the nature of its powers, we will then know in which realms it must be accepted and where it should be resisted.
Russo outlines the components of the technological system and examines their impact on the educational system. He also discusses the loss of historical memory, including the so-called loss of the self and the transformation of the library. He studies the parallels between technological and literary values in criticism and theory, concluding with an analysis of the fiction of Don DeLillo, one of the most prominent contemporary novelists. DeLillo’s exploration of technology in American life, matched by a powerful critique of it from a broadly humanistic and religious perspective, serves to summarize the themes of the book as a whole.
The Future without a Past will appeal to scholars and students of literary studies, intellectual and cultural history, philosophy, ethics, media studies, and American studies, as well as to general readers who are seeking deeper insights into today’s cultural debates.
On May 21, 2010, Daniel J. Cohen and Tom Scheinfeldt posted the following provocative questions online:
“Can an algorithm edit a journal? Can a library exist without books? Can students build and manage their own learning management platforms? Can a conference be held without a program? Can Twitter replace a scholarly society?”
As recently as the mid-2000s, questions like these would have been unthinkable. But today serious scholars are asking whether the institutions of the academy as they have existed for decades, even centuries, aren’t becoming obsolete. Every aspect of scholarly infrastructure is being questioned, and even more importantly, being hacked. Sympathetic scholars of traditionally disparate disciplines are canceling their association memberships and building their own networks on Facebook and Twitter. Journals are being compiled automatically from self-published blog posts. Newly minted PhDs are forgoing the tenure track for alternative academic careers that blur the lines between research, teaching, and service. Graduate students are looking beyond the categories of the traditional CV and building expansive professional identities and popular followings through social media. Educational technologists are “punking” established technology vendors by rolling out their own open source infrastructure.
Here, in Hacking the Academy, Daniel J. Cohen and Tom Scheinfeldt have gathered a sampling of the answers to their initial questions from scores of engaged academics who care deeply about higher education. These are the responses from a wide array of scholars, presenting their thoughts and approaches with a vibrant intensity, as they explore and contribute to ongoing efforts to rebuild scholarly infrastructure for a new millennium.
Mystery fiction, although essentially the same in all its national varieties, nevertheless comes in several types and several wrappings.
The present study of American, Australian, and Canadian detective fiction concerns literature which speaks in the ways of heroes and humanities about the human condition. All authors studied here, to one degree or another, demonstrate their concern with human society, some more strongly than others, but all with their eyes on the human situation and human existence. At times these studies lean toward the tragic in their outlook and development. In all instances they center on the humanistic.
The humanities include disciplines as diverse as literary theory, linguistics, history, film studies, theology, and philosophy. Do these various fields of study have anything in common that distinguishes them from, say, physics or sociology? The tripartite division between the natural sciences, the social sciences and the humanities may seem self-evident, but it only arose during the course of the 19th century and is still contested today.History and Philosophy of the Humanities: An Introduction presents a reasoned overview of the conceptual and historical backgrounds of the humanities. In four sections, it discusses:- the most influential views on scientific knowledge from Aristotle to Thomas Kuhn;- the birth of the modern humanities and its relation to the natural and social sciences;- the various methodological schools and conceptual issues in the humanities;- several themes that set the agenda for current debates in the humanities: critiques of modernity; gender, sexuality and identity; and postcolonialism.Thus, it provides students in the humanities with a comprehensive understanding of the backgrounds of their own discipline, its relation to other disciplines, and the state of the art of the humanities at large.
The humanities include disciplines as diverse as literary theory, linguistics, history, film studies, theology, and philosophy. Do these various fields of study have anything in common, which distinguishes them from e.g. physics or sociology? The tripartite division between the natural sciences, the social sciences and the humanities may seem self-evident, but it has arisen only in the course of the 19th century, and has been contested ever since.History and Philosophy of the Humanities: An Introduction presents a reasoned overview of the conceptual and historical backgrounds of the humanities. In four sections, it discusses:- The most influential views on scientific knowledge from Aristotle to Thomas Kuhn;- The birth of the modern humanities;- The various methodological schools and conceptual issues in the humanities;- Some themes that set the agenda for current debates in the humanities: critiques of modernity; gender, sexuality and identity; and post-colonialism.Thus, it provides students in the various disciplines of the humanities with a comprehensive understanding of the backgrounds of their field, its relation with other disciplines, and the state of the art in the humanities at large. Intended readership: advanced undergraduate and graduate students.
Hope, Heart, and the Humanities tells the story of how Venture, a free, interdisciplinary college humanities course inspired by the national Clemente Course, has helped open doors to improve the lives of people with low incomes who face barriers to attending college. For over a decade, this course has given hundreds of adults, some of them immigrants or refugees, the knowledge, confidence, and power to rechart their lives.
Readers will go inside Venture classrooms to see what occurs when adults enter serious discussions about literature, critical writing, art history, American history, and philosophy. Apparent also are the difficulties nontraditional students, who range in age from 18 to 60, often encounter in a college classroom and the hard choices they and their teachers make. What readers may remember most are the stories and words from people whose views of the world broaden and whose directions in life changed.
“How do we think?” N. Katherine Hayles poses this question at the beginning of this bracing exploration of the idea that we think through, with, and alongside media. As the age of print passes and new technologies appear every day, this proposition has become far more complicated, particularly for the traditionally print-based disciplines in the humanities and qualitative social sciences. With a rift growing between digital scholarship and its print-based counterpart, Hayles argues for contemporary technogenesis—the belief that humans and technics are coevolving—and advocates for what she calls comparative media studies, a new approach to locating digital work within print traditions and vice versa.
Hayles examines the evolution of the field from the traditional humanities and how the digital humanities are changing academic scholarship, research, teaching, and publication. She goes on to depict the neurological consequences of working in digital media, where skimming and scanning, or “hyper reading,” and analysis through machine algorithms are forms of reading as valid as close reading once was. Hayles contends that we must recognize all three types of reading and understand the limitations and possibilities of each. In addition to illustrating what a comparative media perspective entails, Hayles explores the technogenesis spiral in its full complexity. She considers the effects of early databases such as telegraph code books and confronts our changing perceptions of time and space in the digital age, illustrating this through three innovative digital productions—Steve Tomasula’s electronic novel, TOC; Steven Hall’s The Raw Shark Texts; and Mark Z. Danielewski’s Only Revolutions.
Deepening our understanding of the extraordinary transformative powers digital technologies have placed in the hands of humanists, How We Think presents a cogent rationale for tackling the challenges facing the humanities today.
In this bracing and original book, Geoffrey Galt Harpham argues that today’s humanities are an invention of the American academy in the years following World War II, when they were first conceived as an expression of American culture and an instrument of American national interests. The humanities portray a “dream of America” in two senses: they represent an aspiration of Americans since the first days of the Republic for a state so secure and prosperous that people could enjoy and appreciate culture for its own sake; and they embody in academic terms an idealized conception of the American national character. Although they are struggling to retain their status in America, the concept of the humanities has spread to other parts of the world and remains one of America's most distinctive and valuable contributions to higher education.
The Humanities and the Dream of America explores a number of linked problems that have emerged in recent years: the role, at once inspiring and disturbing, played by philology in the formation of the humanities; the reasons for the humanities’ perpetual state of “crisis”; the shaping role of philanthropy in the humanities; and the new possibilities for literary study offered by the subject of pleasure. Framed by essays that draw on Harpham’s pedagogical experiences abroad and as a lecturer at the U.S. Air Force Academy, as well as his vantage as director of the National Humanities Center, this book provides an essential perspective on the history, ideology, and future of this important topic.
The essays in The Humanities in the Age of Information and Post-Truth represent a defense of the social function of the humanities in today's society. Edited by Ignacio López-Calvo and Christina Lux, the volume explains different ways in which the humanities and the arts, beyond their intrinsic and nonfunctional value, may be a valuable tool in our search for social justice, human empathy, freedom, and peace, all the while helping us answer many of the twenty-first century's big questions. Some essays explore the ways in which the humanities may help us imagine a different, more just world, and articulate politically effective mechanisms to achieve such goals. Others address the place of the humanities and the arts amid the ontological and epistemological uncertainties constantly produced in a fast-changing world.
While the reader may suspect that these types of lucubration are a desperate reaction to decreased public funding for the humanities worldwide, a decreased enrollment of students, or anxiety over the future of our profession, there is in this volume a coherent argument for the continued need, perhaps more now than ever, to invest in humanities education if we are to have informed and socially conscious citizens rather than just willing consumers and obedient workers. Furthermore, the essays prove that the humanities and the arts are, after all, not a luxury but an integral part of a complete scholarly education.
Students of the humanities confront two fundamental questions: How valid and rigorous is the type of knowledge attained in these disciplines? And what good is it? In The Humanities in the Age of Technology, Ciriaco Morón Arroyo offers a systematic inquiry into these questions and outlines the ongoing crisis of the humanities.
Interdisciplining Digital Humanities sorts through definitions and patterns of practice over roughly sixty-five years of work, providing an overview for specialists and a general audience alike. It is the only book that tests the widespread claim that Digital Humanities is interdisciplinary. By examining the boundary work of constructing, expanding, and sustaining a new field, it depicts both the ways this new field is being situated within individual domains and dynamic cross-fertilizations that are fostering new relationships across academic boundaries. It also accounts for digital reinvigorations of “public humanities” in cultural heritage institutions of museums, archives, libraries, and community forums.
Knowledge work is now the reigning business paradigm and affects even the world of higher education. But what perspective can the knowledge of the humanities and arts contribute to a world of knowledge work whose primary mission is business? And what is the role of information technology as both the servant of the knowledge economy and the medium of a new technological cool? In The Laws of Cool, Alan Liu reflects on these questions as he considers the emergence of new information technologies and their profound influence on the forms and practices of knowledge.
Can civic engagement rescue the humanities from a prolonged identity crisis? How can the practices and methods, the conventions and innovations of humanities teaching and scholarship yield knowledge that contributes to the public good? These are just two of the vexing questions David D. Cooper tackles in his essays on the humanities, literacy, and public life. As insightful as they are provocative, these essays address important issues head-on and raise questions about the relevance and roles of humanities teaching and scholarship, the moral footings and public purposes of the humanities, engaged teaching practices, institutional and disciplinary reform, academic professionalism, and public scholarship in a democracy. Destined to stir discussion about the purposes of the humanities and the problems we face during an era of declining institutional support, public alienation and misunderstanding, student ambivalence, and diminishing resources, the questions Cooper raises in this book are uncomfortable and, in his view, necessary for reflection, renewal, and reform. With frank, deft assessments, Cooper reports on active learning initiatives that reenergized his own teaching life while reshaping the teaching mission of the humanities, including service learning, collaborative learning, the learning community movement, and student-centered and deliberative pedagogy.
While it is clear that around 1800 the humanities as a discipline rose to prominence, it is less clear what the exact nature of this shift in academia was. Was it a sudden revolution caused by a momentary but powerful change in the zeitgeist or the turning point of a much longer process? In this volume, the editors have selected a series of essays that look at the origins of the humanities and find that long before 1800 the concept of the humanities was already at the fore. The shift around 1800 was thus mostly institutional, not theoretical. The Making of the Humanities traces this new finding through a broad range of disciplines including literary theory, linguistics, art history, and musicology.
This comprehensive history of the humanities focuses on the modern period (1850-2000). The contributors, including Floris Cohen, Lorraine Daston and Ingrid Rowland, survey the rise of the humanities in interaction with the natural and social sciences, offering new perspectives on the interaction between disciplines in Europe and Asia and new insights generated by digital humanities.
After a remarkable career in higher education, Sidonie Smith offers Manifesto for the Humanities as a reflective contribution to the current academic conversation over the place of the Humanities in the 21st century. Her focus is on doctoral education and opportunities she sees for its reform.
Grounding this manifesto in background factors contributing to current “crises” in the humanities, Smith advocates for a 21st century doctoral education responsive to the changing ecology of humanistic scholarship and teaching. She elaborates a more expansive conceptualization of coursework and dissertation, a more robust, engaged public humanities, and a more diverse, collaborative, and networked sociality.
Writers know only too well how long it can take—and how awkward it can be—to describe spatial relationships with words alone. And while a map might not always be worth a thousand words, a good one can help writers communicate an argument or explanation clearly, succinctly, and effectively.
In his acclaimed How to Lie with Maps, Mark Monmonier showed how maps can distort facts. In Mapping it Out: Expository Cartography for the Humanities and Social Sciences, he shows authors and scholars how they can use expository cartography—the visual, two-dimensional organization of information—to heighten the impact of their books and articles.
This concise, practical book is an introduction to the fundamental principles of graphic logic and design, from the basics of scale to the complex mapping of movement or change. Monmonier helps writers and researchers decide when maps are most useful and what formats work best in a wide range of subject areas, from literary criticism to sociology. He demonstrates, for example, various techniques for representing changes and patterns; different typefaces and how they can either clarify or confuse information; and the effectiveness of less traditional map forms, such as visibility base maps, frame-rectangle symbols, and complementary scatterplot designs for conveying complex spatial relationships.
There is also a wealth of practical information on map compilation, cartobibliographies, copyright and permissions, facsimile reproduction, and the evaluation of source materials. Appendixes discuss the benefits and limitations of electronic graphics and pen-and-ink drafting, and how to work with a cartographic illustrator.
Clearly written, and filled with real-world examples, Mapping it Out demystifies mapmaking for anyone writing in the humanities and social sciences.
"A useful guide to a subject most people probably take too much for granted. It shows how map makers translate abstract data into eye-catching cartograms, as they are called. It combats cartographic illiteracy. It fights cartophobia. It may even teach you to find your way."—Christopher Lehmann-Haupt, The New York Times
"Interesting and fresh-represents an important and vigorous challenge to a discipline that at the moment is stuck in its own devices and needs a radical critique to begin to move ahead."
--Paul McHugh, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
"Remarkable in its breadth-an interesting and valuable contribution to the burgeoning literature of the philosophy of psychiatry."
--Christian Perring, Dowling College
Moving Beyond Prozac, DSM, and the New Psychiatry looks at contemporary psychiatric practice from a variety of critical perspectives ranging from Michel Foucault to Donna Haraway. This contribution to the burgeoning field of medical humanities contends that psychiatry's move away from a theory-based model (one favoring psychoanalysis and other talk therapies) to a more scientific model (based on new breakthroughs in neuroscience and pharmacology) has been detrimental to both the profession and its clients. This shift toward a science-based model includes the codification of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders to the status of standard scientific reference, enabling mental-health practitioners to assign a tidy classification for any mental disturbance or deviation. Psychiatrist and cultural studies scholar Bradley Lewis argues for "postpsychiatry," a new psychiatric practice informed by the insights of poststructuralist theory.
Many in higher education fear that the humanities are facing a crisis. But even if the rhetoric about “crisis” is overblown, humanities departments do face increasing pressure from administrators, politicians, parents, and students. In A New Deal for the Humanities, Gordon Hutner and Feisal G. Mohamed bring together twelve prominent scholars who address the history, the present state, and the future direction of the humanities. These scholars keep the focus on public higher education, for it is in our state schools that the liberal arts are taught to the greatest numbers and where their neglect would be most damaging for the nation.
The contributors offer spirited and thought-provoking debates on a diverse range of topics. For instance, they deplore the push by administrations to narrow learning into quantifiable outcomes as well as the demands of state governments for more practical, usable training. Indeed, for those who suggest that a college education should be “practical”—that it should lean toward the sciences and engineering, where the high-paying jobs are—this book points out that while a few nations produce as many technicians as the United States does, America is still renowned worldwide for its innovation and creativity, skills taught most effectively in the humanities. Most importantly, the essays in this collection examine ways to make the humanities even more effective, such as offering a broader array of options than the traditional major/minor scheme, options that combine a student’s professional and intellectual interests, like the new medical humanities programs.
A democracy can only be as energetic as the minds of its citizens, and the questions fundamental to the humanities are also fundamental to a thoughtful life. A New Deal for the Humanities takes an intrepid step in making the humanities—and our citizens—even stronger in the future.
The changes we have seen in recent years in the scholarly publishing world - including the growth of digital publishing and changes to the role and strategies of publishers and libraries alike - represent the most dramatic paradigm shift in scholarly communications in centuries. This volume brings together leading scholars from across the humanities to explore that transformation and consider the challenges and opportunities it brings.
A New Republic of Letters
Jerome McGann Harvard University Press, 2014 Library of Congress AZ186.M35 2014 | Dewey Decimal 001.3
Jerome McGann's manifesto argues that the history of texts and how they are preserved and accessed for interpretation are the overriding subjects of humanist study in the digital age. Theory and philosophy no longer suffice as an intellectual framework. But philology--out of fashion for decades--models these concerns with surprising fidelity.
Fifteen years into a successful career as a college professor, Ilana Blumberg encounters a crisis in the classroom that sends her back to the most basic questions about education and prompts a life-changing journey that ultimately takes her from East Lansing to Tel Aviv. As she explores how civic and religious commitments shape the culture of her humanities classrooms, Blumberg argues that there is no education without ethics. When we know what sort of society we seek to build, our teaching practices follow.
In vivid classroom scenes from kindergarten through middle school to the university level, Blumberg conveys the drama of intellectual discovery as she offers novice and experienced teachers a pedagogy of writing, speaking, reading, and thinking that she links clearly to the moral and personal development of her students.
Writing as an observant Jew and as an American, Blumberg does not shy away from the difficult challenge of balancing identities in the twenty-first century: how to remain true to a community of origin while being a national and global citizen. As she negotiates questions of faith and citizenship in the wide range of classrooms she traverses, Blumberg reminds us that teaching - and learning - are nothing short of a moral art, and that the future of our society depends on it.
Lawrence W. Towner was head of one of the country's largest independent research libraries. He was also an eloquent spokesman for the needs of scholars and institutions in the humanities. While at the Newberry Library, he built and focused its prestigious collections, pioneered in the preservation of books, and created major research centers. His efforts established the library as a community of scholars while encouraging its use by students and the general public.
Towner's essays and talks cover a broad range of topics of continuing relevance to scholarship and the humanities. His writings gathered in Past Imperfect are concerned with such issues as the role of independent research libraries and the politics of funding. A section of historical essays on the common people of New England reveal his concern with neglected fields of history, a theme that guided his career as a librarian. Spanning the range of his experience and expertise, this volume expresses Towner's coherent vision of the place of humanities, libraries, and scholarship in American life.
Lawrence W. Towner (1921-92) taught history at M.I.T., the College of William and Mary, and Northwestern University. In 1962 he was appointed librarian of the Newberry Library and directed the library for the next twenty-four years.
The humanities, considered by many as irrelevant for modern careers and hopelessly devoid of funding, seem to be in a perpetual state of crisis, at the mercy of modernizing and technological forces that are driving universities towards academic pursuits that pull in grant money and direct students to lucrative careers. But as Paul Reitter and Chad Wellmon show, this crisis isn’t new—in fact, it’s as old as the humanities themselves.
Today’s humanities scholars experience and react to basic pressures in ways that are strikingly similar to their nineteenth-century German counterparts. The humanities came into their own as scholars framed their work as a unique resource for resolving crises of meaning and value that threatened other cultural or social goods. The self-understanding of the modern humanities didn’t merely take shape in response to a perceived crisis; it also made crisis a core part of its project. Through this critical, historical perspective, Permanent Crisis can take scholars and anyone who cares about the humanities beyond the usual scolding, exhorting, and hand-wringing into clearer, more effective thinking about the fate of the humanities. Building on ideas from Max Weber and Friedrich Nietzsche to Helen Small and Danielle Allen, Reitter and Wellmon dig into the very idea of the humanities as a way to find meaning and coherence in the world.
For too long, argues Richard Harvey Brown, social scientists have felt forced to choose between imitating science's empirical methodology and impersonating a romantic notion of art, the methods of which are seen as primarily a matter of intuition, interpretation, and opinion. Developing the idea of a "cognitive aesthetic," Brown shows how both science and art—as well as the human studies that stand between them—depend on metaphoric thinking as their "logic of discovery" and may be assessed in terms of such aesthetic criteria of adequacy as economy, elegance, originality, scope, congruence, and form.
By recognizing this "aesthetic" common ground between science and art, Brown demonstrates that a fusion can be achieved within the human sciences of these two principal ideals of knowledge—the scientific or positivist one and the artistic or intuitive one. A path, then, is opened for creating a knowledge of ourselves and society which is at once objective and subjective, at once valid scientifically and significantly humane.
The Politics of Research
Levine, George Rutgers University Press, 1997 Library of Congress AZ188.U5P65 1997 | Dewey Decimal 001.30720973
"Eloquent, provocative, and timely, these essays provide a thoughtful, undoctrinaire defense of the centrality of the humanities to higher education--and society--at the millennium."--Cora Kaplan, University of Southampton The crisis in the humanities and higher education intensifies daily. The partisan din drowns out the voices of those thinkers who have resisted the seductions of strong ideology. Against the tendencies of the extreme attacks on higher education from the right and the counterattacks from the left, many academics would prefer to get beyond critical fashions and easy slogans. In this collection, leading scholars demonstrate how the current furor threatens the critical analysis of culture, so vital to a healthy society. They explore the historical sources of the crisis, the relations between politics and research, the responsibilities and possibilities of the academic intellectual, the structure of the institution of the university, the functions and achievements of the humanities, and the development of interdisciplinarity as a catalyst for change. This volume is a necessary resource for understanding the current crisis and for transforming the academy as we approach the twenty-first century. The contributors are Jonathan Arac, Lauren Berlant, Peter Brooks, Roman de la Campa, Myra Jehlen, Stanley Katz, Richard Kramer, Dominick LaCapra, George Levine, Ellen Messer-Davidow, Helene Moglen, Bill Readings, and Bruce Robbins. E. Ann Kaplan is the director of The Humanities Institute at the State University of New York at Stony Brook
In Professional Academic Writing in the Humanities and Social Sciences, Susan Peck MacDonald tackles important and often controversial contemporary questions regarding the rhetoric of inquiry, the social construction of knowledge, and the professionalization of the academy. MacDonald argues that the academy has devoted more effort to analyzing theory and method than to analyzing its own texts. Professional texts need further attention because they not only create but are also shaped by the knowledge that is special to each discipline. Her assumption is that knowledge-making is the distinctive activity of the academy at the professional level; for that reason, it is important to examine differences in the ways the professional texts of subdisciplinary communities focus on and consolidate knowledge within their fields.
Throughout the book, MacDonald stresses her conviction that academics need to do a better job of explaining their text-making axioms, clarifying their expectations of students at all levels, and monitoring their own professional practices. MacDonald’s proposals for both textual and sentence-level analysis will help academic professionals better understand how they might improve communication within their professional communities and with their students.
Sometimes playful, always provocative, Professions is a collection of searching and candid conversations--ranging from dialogues to tongue-in-cheek diatribes--on the issues that face literary and cultural critics today.
This volume bares professional concerns, relationships, ambitions, and insecurities about working in academe. Professions provides hard-to-get insider information for students contemplating an academic career. It also challenges professional scholars to retrieve the intellectual curiosity that drew them to scholarship in the first place while demonstrating how disagreement on controversial issues can be conducted with respect, good humor, and an open mind.
Jane Tompkins and Gerald Graff
John McGowan and Regenia Gagnier
James Phelan and James Kincaid
Marjorie Perloff and Robert von Hallberg
Judith Jackson Fossett and Kevin Gaines
Dennis W. Allen and Judith Roof
Niko Pfund, Gordon Hutner, and Martha Banta
Geoffrey Galt Harpham
Donald E. Hall and Susan S. Lanser
J. Hillis Miller, Herbert Lindenberger, Sandra Gilbert, Bonnie Zimmerman, Nellie Y. McKay, and Elaine Marks
In Putting the Humanities PhD to Work Katina L. Rogers grounds practical career advice in a nuanced consideration of the current landscape of the academic workforce. Drawing on surveys, interviews, and personal experience, Rogers explores the evolving rhetoric and practices regarding career preparation and how those changes intersect with admissions practices, scholarly reward structures, and academic labor practices—especially the increasing reliance on contingent labor. Rogers invites readers to consider how graduate training can lead to meaningful and significant careers beyond the academy. She provides graduate students with context and analysis to inform the ways they discern their own potential career paths while taking an activist perspective that moves toward individual success and systemic change. For those in positions to make decisions in humanities departments or programs, Rogers outlines the circumstances and pressures that students face and gives examples of programmatic reform that address career matters in structural ways. Throughout, Rogers highlights the important possibility that different kinds of careers offer engaging, fulfilling, and even unexpected pathways for students who seek them out.
The twenty essays in this effort to bring new vitality to the humanities range through fields familiar in life but unfamiliar in the humanities canon. They include leisure, folk cultures, material culture, pornography, comics, animal rights, Black studies, traveling, and, of course, the bugbear of academics, television.
Ecological restoration is an inherently challenging endeavor. Not only is its underlying science still developing, but the concept itself raises complex questions about nature, culture, and the role of humans in the landscape.Using a recent controversy over ecological restoration efforts in Chicago as a touchstone for discussion, Restoring Nature explores the difficult questions that arise during the planning and implementation of restoration projects in urban and wildland settings. Contributors examine: moral and ethical questions regarding the practice of restoration conflicts over how nature is defined and who should be included in decisions about restoration and management how managers can make restoration projects succeed given the various constraints and considerations that need to be taken into account .Using diverse examples from projects across the U.S., the book suggests ways in which restoration conflicts might be resolved, and provides examples of stewardship that show how volunteers and local residents can help make and maintain restored environments. Throughout, contributors set forth a wealth of ideas, case studies, methodological approaches, and disciplinary perspectives that shed valuable light on the social underpinnings of ecological restoration and natural resource management.Restoring Nature is an intriguing exploration of human-nature interactions, of differing values and understanding of nature, and of how that information can be effectively used to guide science and policy. It provides new conceptual insights and practical solutions for anyone working to manage or restore natural ecosystems.
Rhetoric and the Digital Humanities
Edited by Jim Ridolfo and William Hart-Davidson University of Chicago Press, 2015 Library of Congress AZ195.R47 2015 | Dewey Decimal 025.060013
The digital humanities is a rapidly growing field that is transforming humanities research through digital tools and resources. Researchers can now quickly trace every one of Issac Newton’s annotations, use social media to engage academic and public audiences in the interpretation of cultural texts, and visualize travel via ox cart in third-century Rome or camel caravan in ancient Egypt. Rhetorical scholars are leading the revolution by fully utilizing the digital toolbox, finding themselves at the nexus of digital innovation.
Rhetoric and the Digital Humanities is a timely, multidisciplinary collection that is the first to bridge scholarship in rhetorical studies and the digital humanities. It offers much-needed guidance on how the theories and methodologies of rhetorical studies can enhance all work in digital humanities, and vice versa. Twenty-three essays over three sections delve into connections, research methodology, and future directions in this field. Jim Ridolfo and William Hart-Davidson have assembled a broad group of more than thirty accomplished scholars. Read together, these essays represent the cutting edge of research, offering guidance that will energize and inspire future collaborations.
Nearly a decade ago, Johanna Drucker cofounded the University of Virginia’s SpecLab, a digital humanities laboratory dedicated to risky projects with serious aims. In SpecLab she explores the implications of these radical efforts to use critical practices and aesthetic principles against the authority of technology based on analytic models of knowledge.
Inspired by the imaginative frontiers of graphic arts and experimental literature and the technical possibilities of computation and information management, the projects Drucker engages range from Subjective Meteorology to Artists’ Books Online to the as yet unrealized ’Patacritical Demon, an interactive tool for exposing the structures that underlie our interpretations of text. Illuminating the kind of future such experiments could enable, SpecLab functions as more than a set of case studies at the intersection of computers and humanistic inquiry. It also exemplifies Drucker’s contention that humanists must play a role in designing models of knowledge for the digital age—models that will determine how our culture will function in years to come.
Half a century into the digital era, the profound impact of information technology on intellectual and cultural life is universally acknowledged but still poorly understood. The sheer complexity of the technology coupled with the rapid pace of change makes it increasingly difficult to establish common ground and to promote thoughtful discussion.
Responding to this challenge, Switching Codes brings together leading American and European scholars, scientists, and artists—including Charles Bernstein, Ian Foster, Bruno Latour, Alan Liu, and Richard Powers—to consider how the precipitous growth of digital information and its associated technologies are transforming the ways we think and act. Employing a wide range of forms, including essay, dialogue, short fiction, and game design, this book aims to model and foster discussion between IT specialists, who typically have scant training in the humanities or traditional arts, and scholars and artists, who often understand little about the technologies that are so radically transforming their fields. Switching Codes will be an indispensable volume for anyone seeking to understand the impact of digital technology on contemporary culture, including scientists, educators, policymakers, and artists, alike.
The events of September 11, 2001, have had a strong impact on theory and the humanities. They call for a new philosophy, as the old philosophy is inadequate to account for them. They also call for reflection on theory, philosophy, and the humanities in general. While the recent location and killing of Osama bin Laden, the leader of al-Qaeda, in Pakistan on May 2, 2011—almost ten years after he and his confederates carried out the 9/11 attacks—may have ended the “war on terror,” it has not ended the journey to understand what it means to be a theorist in the age of phobos nor the effort to create a new philosophy that measures up with life in the new millennium. It is in the spirit of hope—the hope that theory will help us to understand the age of terror—that the essays in this collection are presented.
What is a hostile environment? How exactly can feelings be mixed? What on earth might it mean when someone writes that he was “happily situated” as a slave? The answers, of course, depend upon whom you ask.
Science and the humanities typically offer two different paradigms for thinking about emotion—the first rooted in brain and biology, the second in a social world. With rhetoric as a field guide, Uncomfortable Situations establishes common ground between these two paradigms, focusing on a theory of situated emotion. Daniel M. Gross anchors the argument in Charles Darwin, whose work on emotion has been misunderstood across the disciplines as it has been shoehorned into the perceived science-humanities divide. Then Gross turns to sentimental literature as the single best domain for studying emotional situations. There’s lost composure (Sterne), bearing up (Equiano), environmental hostility (Radcliffe), and feeling mixed (Austen). Rounding out the book, an epilogue written with ecological neuroscientist Stephanie Preston provides a different kind of cross-disciplinary collaboration. Uncomfortable Situations is a conciliatory work across science and the humanities—a groundbreaking model for future studies.
This pioneering textbook explores the theoretical background of cultural variety, both in past and present. How is it possible to study 'culture' when the topic covers the arts, literature, movies, history, sociology, anthropology and gender studies? Understanding Culture examines the evolution of a concept with varying meanings depending on changing norms. Offering a long-duration analysis of the relationship between culture and nature, this book looks at the origins of studying culture from an international perspective.Using examples from the several scholarly traditions in the practice of studying culture, Understanding Culture is a key introduction to the area. It identifies the history of interpreting culture as a meeting point between the long-standing historical investigation of 'humanism' and 'postmodernism' and is a comprehensive resource for those who wish to further their engagement with culture as both a historical and contemporary phenomenon.
What constitutes the study of philosophy or physics? What exactly does an anthropologist do, or a geologist or historian? In short, what are the arts and sciences? While many of us have been to college and many aspire to go, we may still wonder just what the various disciplines represent and how they interact. What are their origins, methods, applications, and unique challenges? What kind of people elect to go into each of these fields, and what are the big issues that motivate them? Curious to explore these questions himself, Dartmouth College professor and mathematician Dan Rockmore asked his colleagues to explain their fields and what it is that they do. The result is an accessible, entertaining, and enlightening survey of the ideas and subjects that contribute to a liberal education. The book offers a doorway to the arts and sciences for anyone intrigued by the vast world of ideas.
In What Does It Mean to Grow Old? essayists come to grips as best they can with the phenomenon of an America that is about to become the Old Country. They have been drawn from every relevant discipline—gerontology, social medicine, politics, health, anthropology, ethics, law—and asked to speak their mind. Most of them write extremely well [and their] sharply individual voices are heard.