Blog Post

Answering epistemological questions in the Digital Humanities

As I am preparing to fine-tune my work-plan a cemetery 'archival' project for a visual studies class, I thought I'll post some questions I have in relation to informational fragments and epistemology:

1. How can one collate fragmentary and incomplete information in such a way that one can use the ‘spaces’ and ‘gaps’ and ‘non-entity’ between these fragments to uncover the forms and categories of information/data that are lost?

2. In the process of understanding how and why a particular category of information/data is lost, how can we therefore construct an epistemic map to place these ‘missing’ data in? How would this epistemic map look like?

3. Can we possibly use unmarked, rotting, semi-destroyed or destroyed graves as representative of the epistemic ‘blackholes’?

4. How do we even begin to construct a toolbox for charting and mapping other forms and categories of knowledge ontologies? How can we develop transferrable templates from one epistemic spatiality to another?

5. As a concrete example (and question), how do we create a critical historiography by way of visualization, e.g. the envisioning of the silenced and repressed discourse of the Afro-American communities in the South through the repressed and ‘missing’ information links?


 I suppose some of these questions will jive well with some of the questions relating to public history and technology that are being discussed at the #ThatCampRTP I am following via Twitter. I am sure these are the same questions asked in the work by most of the people involved with HASTAC in one way or another, and I look forward to getting some respones. I will post more updates on this project, and even the final link to it, as I go along. Many of the questions I will be asking myself in the course of doing this project will be the same sort of questions that are relevant to those working in the digital humanities.


On a slightly different note (though there are some parallels), I thought I should direct the readers to the FHI blog entry  I have posted on the subject of social networks, hacking and visionary ideas.


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