On Thursday, April 21, 2016, at 12 p.m. in the Digital Scholarship Lab at the Rockefeller Library, scholars Tara Nummedal and Donna Bilak will speak about their digital publication, Project Atalanta. This event is free and open to the public. A reception will follow the talk.
Recently chosen as one of two pilot projects for Brown’s Mellon-funded digital publishing initiative, Nummedal and Bilak’s publication will bring a multimedia seventeenth century text to life in digital form. The digital publication will produce a dynamic, enhanced digital edition of Michael Maier’s extraordinary text, Atalanta fugiens (1617/18). An alchemical emblem book, Maier’s Atalanta fugiens re-casts the myth of Atalanta—the fleet-footed virgin—as a series of fifty emblems that outline the creation of the philosopher’s stone. With its combination of text, image, and music, the Atalanta fugiens represents an early multimedia work. In Project Atalanta, this historic text will be represented in dynamic digital form and be accompanied by newly written scholarship that will help elucidate the Atalanta fugiens’ many layers.
In this lunchtime talk, Nummedal and Bilak will discuss their work-in-progress, share insight into the world of seventeenth century emblem culture, and help build a foundation for an open dialogue about the processes, opportunities, and challenges of producing digitally rich scholarly products.
Tara Nummedal is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the History Department. She is the author of Alchemy and Authority in the Holy Roman Empire and is currently completing her second book, “The Lion’s Blood: Alchemy, Gender, and Apocalypse in Reformation Germany.” Her work has been supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Chemical Heritage Foundation, and, most recently, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. She is Past President of the New England Renaissance Conference and a member of the editorial board of the journal Ambix. She teaches courses in early modern European history and the history of science.
Donna Bilak is a lecturer at Columbia University in New York. Her research interests encompass early modern European history of science and alchemy, early modern emblem culture, as well as 19th-century jewelry history and technology. Dr. Bilak’s doctoral research reconstructed the life and times of a 17th-century Puritan alchemist who operated in England and America, and she was the 2013-14 Edelstein Postdoctoral Fellow at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia where her research focused on analysis of the Atalanta fugiens(1618), an alchemical emblem book that encodes laboratory technologies using music and images. Dr. Bilak has lectured extensively on the topics of early modern alchemy as well as jewelry history throughout North America and Europe.
Date: Thursday, April 21, 2016
Time: 12 p.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence