Why Do We Need DH?: Digital Humanities in China
Speaker: Jing Chen 陈静
Associate Professor, School of Arts, Nanjing University
Founder & Editor, 01Lab (零壹 Lab)
Time: 2:00 pm-3:00 pm, Friday April 6
Place: Room 218, Sterling Memorial Library
Sponsored by the East Asia Library, Digital Humanities Lab and Council on East Asian Studies at Yale University.
Following the recent appearance of Digital Humanities publications, workshops, and social media groups, DH has emerged as a new field in China. But, if DH is understood as a merger between humanities domain knowledge and quantitative tools like Natural Language Processing, GIS, or digital archiving, then how new, exactly, is DH in China? What are the stakes of using “DH” to rename a network of older work? Answering such questions is important for appreciating the current status of DH in the Chinese academy, but also helpful for both situating the DH landscape within a global research dynamic and understanding local knowledge production in an age of digital media. This speech focuses on early DH practitioners, particularly their understanding of the role of digital media, computational tools, and algorithms in humanities research by reflecting on local media practices, shifts in incentives from doing library-based research to more individual work, the new urgency to share resources and improving cyberinfrastructure, and the necessity of advancing digital literacy in the newest generation of scholars.
Jing Chen is Associate Professor of School of Arts at Nanjing University. She also serves as the executive director of the Center for Digital Humanities Innovation and Studies at Nanjing University. Dr. Chen worked at Rice University’s Chao Center for Asian Studies as the Henry Luce Postdoctoral Fellow from 2012 to 2014. Her current interest focuses on Digital Humanities, image studies and Cultural and Media Studies, especially the visual knowledge production during the transformation of media. She is the project manager of the Ephemera Project and the Chinese Commercial Advertisement Archive (1880-1940). She is also the Co-PI for the project of the Virtual Museum of the Grand Canal of China (Jinagsu section). She has guest-edited on special issues on Digital Humanities for academic journals in China including Library Development, Library Tribune and Cultural Studies. She is the executive editor of Digital Humanities Studies, a monographic series soon to be published by the Nanjing University Press. Dr. Chen is the founder and editor of 01Lab (零壹Lab), a popular public WeChat journal on DH.