Digital Archiving Resources

From Text to Tags: The Digital Humanities in an Introductory Literature Course

Title

From Text to Tags: The Digital Humanities in an Introductory Literature Course

Subject

Pedagogy

Description

The class, titled “Introduction to Literary Study,” helps students build the foundational skills commonly used for the study of literature, including close reading, textual analysis, attention to genre and form, and attention to material and historical contexts. These are all skills that experts working in the digital humanities use to produce projects like digital scholarly editions, tools for large-scale analysis, and visual representations of texts and intertextual relationships. However, my students (largely sophomores), needed to work on honing those skills rather than applying them to a large-scale project or series of complex texts. With that in mind, I designed a digital humanities unit made up of a series of small assignments oriented towards experimenting with digitization and text analysis in a fairly low-stakes environment.

The unit starts with identifying key elements of physical texts (rare books from the university library) and how those might translate into a digital environment. It then moves through digitization and into the ways that computers impact our reading and analysis of texts, focusing on some introductory text analysis tools and text markup. Though my assignments revolve around computers and bytes more than paper and highlighters, they share the goal articulated by Paul Fyfe in “Digital Pedagogy Unplugged”: “to keep students’ attention on the critical labor that digital resources seem to dissolve” (par. 12). By introducing my students to the process of creating familiar products like a digitized text or a word cloud, I hoped to demonstrate to them that the act of building a digital product or working tool is always an act of interpretation. (Provided by author)

Creator

Ficke, Sarah

Publisher

John Hopkins University Press

Date

2014-07

Contributor

Eaddy, Brionna

Type

Journal Article

Bibliographic Citation

Sarah H. Ficke. "From Text to Tags: The Digital Humanities in an Introductory Literature Course." CEA Critic 76, no. 2 (2014): 200-210. https://muse.jhu.edu/ (accessed April 20, 2016).

Files

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Collection

Citation

Ficke, Sarah, “From Text to Tags: The Digital Humanities in an Introductory Literature Course,” Digital Archiving Resources, accessed September 24, 2017, http://dar.cah.ucf.edu/items/show/364.