CDH Distinguished Lecturer Series

Looking Back and Thinking Ahead: Humanistic Methods and/in Digital Humanities

Professor Johanna Drucker

Wednesday, 1 May 2019

5.00pm–6.30pm: Old Divinity School, St John’s College, Cambridge CB2 1TP

Methodological concessions to the requirements of formal systems have characterised much of the digital humanities work in the decades since the initial encounter of computational processing and humanistic scholarship. What are the benefits and losses in this exchange and to what extent is this asymmetry a necessary condition of working in a computational environment? If these are the conditions for work, what are the critical issues that need to be brought to bear on the formulation of our projects and assessments of their outcomes? And if alternatives can be formulated, what would they look like and how would they be implemented? How can we reflect responsibly on digital humanities within the larger ecologies of intellectual work in the current political and ecological climate? This talk looks at these questions from historical and current perspectives but within a framework of critical – and sceptical – epistemology to ask how the future of our work might build on and deviate from the work of the past.

Professor Drucker is the Breslauer Professor of Bibliographical Studies in the Department of Information Studies at UCLA. She is internationally known for her work in the history of graphic design, typography, experimental poetry, fine art and digital humanities. In addition, she has a reputation as a book artist, and her limited edition works are in special collections and libraries worldwide. Her recent books include Graphesis: Visual Forms of Knowledge Production (Harvard, 2014), What Is?: Nine Epistemological Essays (Cuneiform Press, 2013), and Digital_Humanities (with Anne Burdick, Peter Lunenfeld, Todd Presner and Jeffrey Schnapp; MIT, 2012).

This lecture will be followed by a wine reception.

Book your place here.


  • Posted 5 Feb 2019

Cambridge Digital Humanities

Tel: +44 1223 766886