There was, as it turns out, a fair bit of DH integrated into my Day of DH–perhaps more than I’d anticipated in the morning.
Besides talking about digital research projects, I found myself (for example) trying to persuade my research assistant to switch the History Graduate Student Association research blog to a different platform, hypotheses.org. Well, I am on their English editorial board, and I do think it is a good system! What I really appreciate about hypotheses.org is their desire to promote an international community of (not-necessarily academic) scholars.
Over dinner, one of my friends discussed her successes and failures in teaching a recipes-based history course. Of course, I tried to persuade her to write a blog post on teaching recipes for Recipes Project…
Is blogging part of DH? It’s not about making or using tools, but it is–I think–something that is at the heart of DH: building communities.
- Breakfast: send and check email, Twitter and Day of DH discussions.
- Early dental appointment.
- Admin-related phone calls.
- Lunch: send and check email, Twitter and Day of DH discussions.
- Teach last class of term.
- Meetings with students.
- Meeting with research assistant.
- Some grading.
- Meet friends for end-of-term celebration.
So where’s the DH?
Well, some of my tweeting is about promoting today’s Recipes Project post and about soliciting nominations for the next Giants’ Shoulders History of Science carnival that I’m hosting at my Sloane Letters Blog.
But more specifically, I have some e-mails to send about hiring another summer student for my Sloane Correspondence research team and payment arrangements for my research team (especially while I’m on leave from July). I’ll also be meeting with a research assistant who is helping to edit a digital transcription of a seventeenth-century recipe book.
What surprised me most about undertaking digital history projects is the amount of research time that is actually about project management: grant-getting, hiring and paying research assistants, overseeing and managing group work-flow, editing research assistants’ blog posts and scholarly work… (To just name a few activities.)
But what I love about digital projects is the sense of community that comes from building a group blog (The Recipes Project), collaborating with international researchers (recipe transcription) and working with a team of research assistants (Sloane Correspondence). With so many people involved, it’s often complicated and occasionally seems to be going nowhere fast–but it’s always interesting!