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The Digital Humanist: A Critical Inquiry

Domenico Fiormonte, Teresa Numerico, and Francesca Tomasi

Published onNov 27, 2021
The Digital Humanist: A Critical Inquiry

The Digital Humanist: A Critical Inquiry

Domenico Fiormonte, Teresa Numerico, and Francesca Tomasi
Translated by Desmond Schmidt and Christopher Ferguson

  • ISBN: 978-0-692-58044-8

  • Paperback, 6.14×9.21 in., B/W, 262pp.

  • Publication date: December 7, 2015

  • Price: $22

  • BISAC: COM060000, SOC052000, SOC071000

  • Thema:

  • Categories: Technology Studies, Digital Humanities

This book, translated for the first time from Italian into English, offers a critical introduction to the core technologies underlying the Internet from a humanistic perspective. It provides a cultural critique of computing technologies, by exploring the history of computing and examining issues related to writing, representing, archiving and searching. The book raises awareness of, and calls for, the digital humanities to address the challenges posed by the linguistic and cultural divides in computing, the clash between communication and control, and the biases inherent in networked technologies.

A common problem with publications in the Digital Humanities is the dominance of the Anglo-American perspective. While seeking to take a broader view, the book attempts to show how cultural bias can become an obstacle to innovation both in the methodology and practice of the Digital Humanities. Its central point is that no technological instrument is culturally unbiased, and that all too often the geography that underlies technology coincides with the social and economic interests of its producers. The alternative proposed in the book is one of a world in which variation, contamination and decentralization are essential instruments for the production and transmission of digital knowledge. It is thus necessary not only to have spaces where DH scholars can interact (such as international conferences, THATCamps, forums and mailing lists), but also a genuine sharing of technological know-how and experience.

This is a truly exceptional work on the subject of the digital…. Students and scholars new to the field of digital humanities will find in this book a gentle introduction to the field, which I cannot but think would be good and perhaps even inspirational for them…. Its history of the development of machines and programs and communities bent on using computers to advance science and research merely sets the stage for an insightful analysis of the role of the digital in the way both scholars and everyday people communicate and conceive of themselves and “others” in written forms — from treatises to credit card transactions.

~ Peter Shillingsburg, Rare Book School

Domenico Fiormonte is Lecturer in the Sociology of Communication and Culture at the Department of Political Sciences at the University of Roma Tre, where he has taught courses on communication theory, composition, new media and digital philology since 2004. He has edited, authored or co-authored five books on Digital Humanities topics.

Teresa Numerico is Associate Professor of Logic and Philosophy of Science at the University of Roma Tre. She has published articles and books on the philosophy of computer science, social informatics, and the ethics and politics of ICTs. She has been lecturing on humanities computing in Italy and abroad since 2001.

Francesca Tomasi is Assistant Professor of Library and Information Sciences at the Department of Classical Philology and Italian Studies, University of Bologna, where she teaches courses on Digital Humanities and Archives and Computer Science. Among her recent publications is a digital scholarly edition of the Letters of fifteenth-century author Vespasiano da Bisticci (Bologna, 2013).

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