Events | Open Access Week @Brown

October 21 – 27, 2019 is Open Access Week, and the Brown University Library is marking the occasion with two events:

Brown Bag on Open Access and Publishing
Wednesday, October 23
1:30 – 2:30 p.m.
121 South Main Street, Providence
Free
More information
Celebrate International Open Access Week by joining Doctoral Candidate Jason Gantenberg, Public Health Librarian Erin Anthony, and Data Management Librarian Andrew Creamer for a Brown Bag discussion on Open Access and Publishing. Get an overview of Open and the many paths to making a publication open. Questions welcomed!

Transform the Narrative: A Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon for Increasing Marginalized Voices in Environmental Justice
Wednesday, October 23
3 – 6 p.m.
Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library
Free
Registration required
Join the Brown University Libraries in collaboration with SACNAS for a Wikipedia edit-a-thon focusing on increasing awareness of marginalized voices in environmental justice. This hands-on workshop will teach you how to edit Wikipedia entries to increase visibility of marginalized voices in environmental activism. There will be autumnal snacks! 

What is Open?

The open movement seeks to work towards solutions of many of the world’s most pressing problems in a spirit of transparency, collaboration, re-use and free access.

Why Open@Brown?

The open movement implicitly supports several facets of Brown’s Strategic Plan, Building on Distinction. The values and goals set forth in commitments toward Integrative Scholarship and Academic Excellence rely upon open communication and sharing of knowledge that could occur organically through an open paradigm of research and teaching.

The open movement:

  • Promotes the acceleration of research,
  • Increases the potential for collaboration,
  • Contributes to the democratization of information, and
  • Supports community partnerships.

More information on Open@Brown

Workshop | Coming Out of the Archives

Coming Out of the Archives poster

Celebrate National Coming Out Day at a hands-on workshop where you can explore pulp fiction, photographs, activist ephemera, meeting records, and more from the Library’s special collections. Plus, use a button maker and copies of queer documents to make your own buttons!

Three workshops will take place in the Bopp Seminar Room at the John Hay Library on Friday, October 11. Registration is requested. Each workshop is capped at 14 participants. Please register for only one workshop time. All three sessions will cover the same material.

Click on the links below or scan the QR code to register for the workshop at your chosen time:

Date: Friday, October 11, 2019
Time: 12 p.m., 1:15 p.m., and 3:30 p.m.
Location: Bopp Seminar Room, 3rd Floor, John Hay Library, 20 Prospect Street, Providence

Workshop | Sustaining DH

Sustaining DH

On April 4 – 5, 2019, the Library hosted a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) workshop entitled, Sustaining DH: An NEH Institute for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities. Brown is one of five sites in the US to host the two-day workshop.

Taught by University of Pittsburgh Professor Alison Langmead (Clinical Associate Professor and Director, Visual Media Workshop; Associate Professor, School of Information Sciences) and Chelsea Gunn (PhD candidate, Information Culture and Data Stewardship; research assistant Sustaining DH), the workshop is designed to help archivists, librarians, and digital humanities practitioners create sustainability plans and address preservation concerns at any point in the life of a digital humanities project.

Over the course of the two-day workshop, 35 attendees representing eight project teams from New England, New York, Canada, Oklahoma, and Pennsylvania, critically examined their respective projects, creating detailed plans for sustainability and preservation.

Modernist Journals Project

Among the projects was the Modernist Journals Project, which was initiated at Brown by Professor Bob Scholes in 1994 and is jointly hosted by Brown and the University of Tulsa. It is currently supported by the John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage with help from the Library’s Center for Digital Scholarship (CDS).

Sustainability

In addition to creating sustainable plans for their own projects, the attendees are also encouraged to become trainers in these sustainability practices moving forward, and they can avail themselves of support as trainers through the Sustaining DH initiative. Members of the Brown community can make use of the resources and expertise available in the Library’s Center for Digital Scholarship, which performs and promotes the use of digital technology for scholarship at Brown. The staff within CDS advise, design, and carry out projects and workshops for every discipline on campus.

Event | Playing the Past – Archaeology and Video Games Play Well Together

On Sunday and Monday, January 27 and 28, 2019, Eva Mol and Carl Walsh, Postdoctoral Research Associates in Archaeology and the Ancient World at the Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology and the Ancient World, hosted a conference and workshop at the Rockefeller Library entitled, “Playing the Past – Archaeology and Video Games Play Well Together.

Conference

On Sunday, speakers discussed the state of the field in gaming and archaeology with a specific focus on how interactive, virtual media function as a differential space for theory-crafting, historytelling, and public outreach. Seven presenters spoke about topics ranging from a case study of Assassin’s Creed: Origins, which is set in ancient Egypt, to the pedagogical uses of games set in ancient time periods, to the participatory creation of historical video games and environments by both experts and the public.

The presentations took place in the Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, which is equipped with a large-scale, high-resolution video wall comprised of twelve 55-inch high-resolution LED screens, allowing for crisp and responsive visual presentation of video games and other media.

Workshop

On Monday, Angus Mol and Aris Politopoulos of Leiden University and the VALUE Foundation taught workshop participants, including archaeologists, designers, critics and consumers, how to use Twine, an intuitive and powerful tool for digital storytelling and game design. The group made use of what was learned by building video games in the Library’s Sidney E. Frank Digital Studio. The Studio’s flexible space allowed the attendees to break into smaller groups and collaborate while using the room’s screen and whiteboards.

Date: Sunday and Monday, January 27 and 28, 2019
Time: All day
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab & Sidney E. Frank Digital Studio, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street

dSalon | A Digital Interface for 17th Century Texts in the Aymara Language of Peru

Join the Center for Digital Scholarship on Wednesday, January 23, 2018 at 2 p.m. in the Digital Scholarship Lab at the Rockefeller Library for a dSalon discussion on “A digital interface for 17th century texts in the Aymara language of Peru.” Nicholas Emlen, Digital Fellow at the John Carter Brown Library, and Patrick Hall, PhD Candidate in the Department of Linguistics at the University of California, Santa Barbara, will give a short introduction to their collaborative project and then will lead a discussion of some of the technical and conceptual issues involved in this project.

This event is part of the Center for Digital Scholarship’s dSalon series of presentations and discussions around digital scholarship. Free and open to the public.

A Digital Interface for 17th Century Texts in the Aymara Language of Peru

The project creates a digital interface that allows users to explore transcribed, translated, and linguistically analyzed versions of two seventeenth century Peruvian texts in the Aymara language. The first text is a nearly 600-page narrative written by a native Aymara speaker. The second is a dictionary—which is still the most comprehensive source on the Aymara language even today—that was compiled from that narrative text. The two texts are digitized and available online, but they are idiosyncratic and difficult to interpret, and in practice remain quite inaccessible to both scholars and Aymara speakers today.

The interface aims to open up accessibility to the texts and to provide a host of new analytical tools. One innovative aspect of the interface is that it provides integrated access to both texts at the same time. The narrative text and the dictionary fit together naturally, since the latter was compiled from the former. Thus, through the digital interface, users can search for a particular word or grammatical feature and call up examples from both the dictionary and the narrative text written by the 17th century Aymara speaker. This integration of analytical information from the dictionary with a sample of how the language was used by native speakers from the 17th century creates a powerful tool that can be used by historians, anthropologists, linguists, and native speakers alike.

Nicholas Emlen

Nicholas Emlen

Nicholas Q. Emlen is a Digital Fellow at the John Carter Brown Library and a Visiting Lecturer in Anthropology at Brown. He is a linguistic anthropologist who has conducted extensive ethnographic research on multilingualism, migration, and coffee production on the Andean-Amazonian agricultural frontier of Southern Peru. He also works on the reconstruction of Quechua-Aymara language contact in the ancient Central Andes, and on multilingualism among Quechua, Aymara, Puquina, and Spanish in the colonial Andes, using texts from the John Carter Brown Library’s collection.

Patrick Hall

Patrick Hall

Patrick Hall is a PhD candidate in linguistics at UC Santa Barbara. His work is focused on new approaches to designing and implementing software for language documentation using the standard, ubiquitous technologies of HTML, CSS, and Javascript. His data models and applications are based directly on documentary practice, resulting in tools which are robust, but nonetheless simple enough to be archived alongside the data they are used to produce.

Date: Wednesday, January 23, 2019
Time: 2 – 3:15 p.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence, RI

Exhibit | Prayer (1934) by Princess Red Wing of Seven Crescents

Prayer, World Day of Prayer for Peace, February 16, 1934
Princess Red Wing of Seven Crescents
Brown University Library, Special Collections

Exhibit

The item on display is a written prayer delivered at an observance of the World Day of Prayer at the Westminster Church, Yonkers, New York, by Princess Red Wing of Seven Crescents, a Narragansett and Pokanoket Wampanoag Indian, speaking on behalf of the Indian women of America. The principal element of the prayer charts the quest of a young boy and leads to a call for reconciliation and peace based on a syncretistic Christian faith.

Princess Red Wing, or Mary E. Glasko (1896–1987), was an internationally known activist, “preserver of Eastern Native American traditions,” and lecturer who co-founded the Tomaquag Museum, the first and only Native American Museum in Rhode Island. She was awarded numerous distinctions and honors during her lifetime, including induction into the Rhode Island Hall of Fame in 1978.

Exhibit Lecture

On Monday, November 19, 2018 from 12 – 1 p.m. in the Digital Scholarship Lab at the Rockefeller Library, Lorén Spears (Narragansett), Executive Director of Tomaquag Museum, will discuss the life and legacy of Princess Red Wing who was, in addition to being a Narragansett/Wampanoag leader, a culture bearer, author, and educator.

Please join us for the talk and Q&A, we also invite you to view the exhibit across the street at the John Hay Library. The lecture and exhibit are free and open to the public.

Exhibit Dates: November 6 – 30, 2018
Exhibit TimeJohn Hay Library Hours
Exhibit Location: Second Floor Landing, John Hay Library, 20 Prospect Street, Providence

Lecture Date: Monday, November 19, 2018
Lecture Time: 12 – 1 p.m.
Lecture Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence

Workshops | Reading, Resisting, and Reimagining The Map

The John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage, the Brown University Library Center for Digital Scholarship, and the John Carter Brown Library present a series of events that ask us to think about the uses of maps, data, and visualizations in the stories we tell about place, identity, and migration. Entitled, Reading, Resisting, and Reimagining The Map, the series consists of three workshops:

Visualizing Precarious Lives in Torn Apart / Separados
Thursday, November 1 from 12 – 1 p.m.
Lecture Room (1st Floor), Nightingale-Brown House (357 Benefit St.), John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage
Dr. Roopika Risam (Assistant Professor of English, Salem State University) discusses her work on Torn Apart / Separados, a highly-collaborative project that uses digital tools to reveal troubling stories about immigration policy, incarceration, and the humanitarian crisis caused by the work of ICE in the United States.

Before There Were Lines Along the Rio Grande
Friday, November 2 from 12 – 1 p.m.
MacMillan Reading Room, John Carter Brown Library
Drawing on the rich collection of rare books and maps at the JCB, curators, librarians, and researchers will provide a critical context for how northern Mexico and what would become the southern United States was experienced during a colonial era that predated the modern nation-state. A historical perspective enables us to understand how these liminal spaces were imagined in an era before electronic surveillance and satellite imagery.

Thinking Critically About Data
Tuesday, November 6 from  3 – 4 p.m.
Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library
Data sets tell stories, support arguments, and help us map and visualize information, but they aren’t neutral. How do you create and visualize data points that aren’t stable, such as data models of identity (e.g. race, gender)? How can we create data models that reflect people’s lived experiences? In this workshop, we’ll analyze and create a dataset, exploring what our data says and what it doesn’t.

For more information on the workshop and the topic of analyzing datasets, click to read “Thinking Critically About Data” by Ashley Champagne, Digital Humanities Librarian at the Brown University Library.

Workshop | Thinking Critically About Data

Ashley Champagne, Digital Humanities Librarian

On Tuesday, November 6, 2018 from 3 – 4 p.m., Ashley Champagne, Digital Humanities Librarian, will offer a workshop entitled, “Misconceptions of Data: Thinking Critically About Data.” Part of the Reading, Resisting, and Reimagining The Map series, the workshop will take place in the Digital Scholarship Lab at the Rockefeller Library. The workshops are free and open to the public.

Thinking Critically About Data

Despite our increasingly digital world, data sets on all kinds of topics are missing, limited, and misunderstood. Mimi Onuoha uses the term “missing data sets” for “the blank spots that exist in spaces that are otherwise data-saturated.” She documents a series of questions that have no answers. Questions like, “How many people have been excluded from public housing because of criminal records?” are impossible to answer because there is incomplete, unreliable, missing data. And even when data sets exist, they may not be publicly accessible.

The team behind the Torn Apart / Separados project encountered the lack of data surrounding the question of where children were living after they were separated from their parents due to Donald Trump’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy in 2018. Public discourse surrounding the crisis focused on how Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials held children at the United States/Mexico border. But the Torn Apart / Separados map tells a different story due to the data that the team rapidly collected, analyzed, and published. ICE centers holding children separated from their parents are all over – not just along the border, but in the middle of the United States and everywhere in between.

The Torn Apart / Separados team were thankfully able to collect the data they needed, but for certain research questions there is little quantitative data to gather. Particularly in such cases, qualitative data can illuminate areas of study where quantitative data is limited or impossible to gather. The population size of transgender individuals in the United States, for example, isn’t well known partly because there isn’t a lot of data on gender identity. One way to find out some information on questions that do not have clear answers is to collect qualitative data, like articles that include the word “transgender,” and explore that qualitative data through text mining. Text mining offers the researcher the ability to find patterns and themes in large corpora.

One of the ways the Torn Apart / Separados team went about collecting the data was by using Application Programing Interfaces (APIs). At the Center for Digital Scholarship in the Brown University Library, we teach workshops on everything from data literacy to text analysis to thinking critically about data. On behalf of our center, I’m offering a workshop to explore how to use an API to collect full text articles to create a dataset.

APIs offer limited information, such as the web URLs, keywords, titles, and sometimes other metadata. They will get researchers part of the way to collecting a qualitative dataset, but not the whole way there. But from the initial API data, we can use web scraping software to gather full text articles. There will always be missing data sets, but beginning to collect data to find answers to our questions is a good start. 

Ashley Champagne
Digital Humanities Librarian
Brown University Library

Date: Tuesday, November 6, 2018
Time:  3 – 4 p.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence, RI

Events | Mellon-Funded Digital Publishing Initiative Workshops

This fall, Brown University Library and the Program in Renaissance and Early Modern Studies (REMS) will host a series of interactive, interdisciplinary workshops on digital humanities scholarship for undergraduates, featuring two pilot projects selected for Brown’s Digital Publishing Initiative, generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The REMS Program offers students many opportunities to work with centuries-old books and pictures in some very modern ways, uncovering exciting research questions in the humanities, history, and the social sciences along the way.

Books without Pages: Project Atalanta

The first workshop, “Books without Pages: Project Atalanta,” will take place on Thursday, October 26, 2017 at 12 p.m. Project Atalanta brings to life in digital form a multimedia seventeenth-century text, Michael Maier’s alchemical emblem book, Atalanta fugiens. The publication will consist of a dynamic, enhanced digital edition of the early modern book, including recordings of its fifty fugues, as well as a critical anthology of media-rich interpretative essays. Associate Professor of History Tara Nummedal, Digital Scholarship Editor Allison Levy, and Designer for Online Publications Crystal Brusch, along with the graduate and undergraduate students who have been working on the project, will present material from the digital project in conjunction with an evaluation of the printed early modern book from the John Hay Library.

Journey into the New World and Other Tales of Forgotten (Early) Modern Media

The second workshop, “Journey into the New World and Other Tales of Forgotten (Early) Modern Media,” will take place on Wednesday, November 1, 2017 at 12 p.m. Professor of Italian Studies Massimo Riva, Digital Scholarship Editor Allison Levy, and Designer for Online Publications Crystal Brusch will introduce undergraduates to the wonders of time travel by exploring several examples of analog media from the pre-digital age. How can popular forms of entertainment from centuries ago, such as the cosmorama, the magic lantern, or the “moving panorama,” help us better understand our own “brave new world” – our digital visual culture? This workshop will revolve around a set of digital simulations of eighteenth-century optical devices being designed for this project.

Both events will take place in the Digital Scholarship Lab on the first floor of Rockefeller Library. A short reception will follow.

Dates: October 26 and November 1, 2017
Time: 12 p.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, Rockefeller Library, 10 Prospect Street

Event | Dante in Real Time

On Monday, December 4, 2017 at 12 p.m., the Brown University Library and the Program in Renaissance and Early Modern Studies (REMS), as part of the Journeys to the Early Modern World in Brown’s Libraries fall series, will present an hour-long workshop, “Dante in Real Time,” designed to introduce undergraduates to the extraordinary possibilities for undertaking engaged research among our special collections.

Dante’s Divine Comedy recounts the poet’s journey through the afterlife and back. From hybrid beasts and fearsome devils to friends and foes, Dante’s world has inspired generations of readers to envision what lay beyond the known world.

In this hands-on workshop, Christopher Geissler, Director of the John Hay Library, and Zoe Langer, 2017 Hay Interdisciplinary Fellow, will view different responses to Dante’s poem, including sixteenth-century maps of Hell and illustrations by Gustave Doré. The Chambers Dante Collection allows us to experience Dante’s poem as its readers encountered it through the centuries and to see how REMS students, working closely with literature, languages, and book illustration, can discover remarkable questions lurking in very old books.

“Dante in Real Time” will take place at 12 p.m. in the Bopp Seminar Room on the third floor of the John Hay Library. A short reception will follow.

Date: Monday, December 4, 2017
Time: 12 p.m.
Location: Bopp Seminar Room, Third Floor, John Hay Library, 20 Prospect Street