Wednesday, February 22, 12:00-1:00 pm
Williams Building, Skybox conference room (fourth floor)
Stanley Fish versus the Digital Humanities
In recent years, the month of January has become debate season for the digital humanities. Whatever it comprises, DH has become increasingly conspicuous at national disciplinary conventions including the Modern Language Association (MLA) and the American Historical Association (AHA) which occur around the new year. As a result, journalists and scholars have used these occasions to scrutinize the problems and possibilities of DH. This year, the literary theorist and legal scholar Stanley Fish turned his New York Times-based blog into a three-part series on the digital humanities, provoking a great deal of public comment and published responses.
For the next meeting of the Digital Scholars reading and discussion group, we will consider the three essays by Fish and some of the commentary they generated.
- Fish, Stanley. “The Old Order Changeth.” Opinionator Blog, New York Times 26 Dec. 2011. <http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/12/26/the-old-order-changeth/>.
- —. “The Digital Humanities and the Transcending of Mortality.” Opinionator Blog, New York Times 9 Jan. 2012. <http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/01/09/the-digital-humanities-and-the-transcending-of-mortality/>.
- —. “Mind Your P’s and B’s: The Digital Humanities and Interpretation.” Opinionator Blog, New York Times 23 Jan. 2012. 24 Jan. 2012. <http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/01/23/mind-your-ps-and-bs-the-digital-humanities-and-interpretation/>.
Responses to these columns abound and many are worth pursuing. We will concentrate on a particular response from Mark Liberman, a distinguished professor of linguistics and computer science at the University of Pennsylvania, for how explicitly his computational analysis engages with the methods as well as claims that Fish disputes.
- Liberman, Mark. “The ‘dance of the P’s and B’s’: Truth or Noise?” Language Log 26 Jan. 2012. <http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=3730>.
As always, anyone is welcome to join the discussion.