Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Graduate Conference Room 0005B
To Code or Not To Code?
For the next session of the Digital Scholars reading and discussion group, we will take up two related questions about programming: as something to learn and as something to study.
First, should humanities students learn to program? A handful of prominent scholars and humanities technology staffers think so. Some argue that you cannot be a digital humanist without knowing how to code. In this session, we will consider the current debate about the necessity of coding, programming, or building—a debate that recently flared at (and after) the 2011 MLA convention.
- Matthew Kirschenbaum, “Hello Worlds: Why humanities students should learn to program.” The Chronicle 23 January 2009. Web. http://chronicle.com/article/Hello-Worlds/5476/
- Julie Meloni, “Engaging with the ‘Screwmeneutical Imperative,’ or why I teach humanities students how to code.” Profhacker 21 April 2010. Web. http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/engaging-with-the-screwmeneutical-imperative-or-why-i-teach-humanities-students-how-to-code/23355
- Stephen Ramsay, “On Building.” Blog 11 January 2011. Web. http://lenz.unl.edu/wordpress/?p=340
Second, how might humanists study code? What does “critical code studies” or the cultural studies of code look like? How do its methodologies and assumptions relate to our more familiar engagement with the semantic and material codes of language and texts?
- Noah Wardrip-Fruin, “Introduction.” Expressive Processing: Digital Fictions, Computer Games, and Software Studies. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2009. 1-21. [on Blackboard]
- Critical Code Studies blog. Browse, especially reflections on MLA 2011 panel “Close Reading the Digital.” http://criticalcodestudies.com/wordpress/