Here at Emory, we have started a graduate student group called the Visual Scholarship Initiative. This group is creating a space of exchange for students whose research includes the production of images, film, performance, sound and other modes of sensory investigation. It seemed to us that many graduate students and professors were involved in these hybrid modes of production, but without critical mass we could neither achieve resource allocation nor serious recognition for contemporary modes of scholarship.
At the same time, my interdisciplinary department, the Graduate Institute of Liberal Arts, has begun a certificate in Digital Scholarship. In fact, the Woodruff LIbraray at Emory University has now invested in the new Digital Scholarship Commons. I find that people involved in hybrid forms of scholarship are often referred to digital scholarship by default. I think some of this is a matter of not fully understanding the literatures and practices behind newer forms of research, but I also think that digital platforms offer greater flexibility to support a wider range of media.
I guess I have been wondering lately what people think the digital does in terms of research perspectives. For example, my work would be classified as performance-as-research and the reasons for this are varied, but intentionally include materiality and sociality as paramount to inquiry. In other words, there is a politics behind producing knowledges that are based on different ways of knowing. In this light, is there some perspective we might say that digital media offers our research that might be less accessible in other forms? Is this a simple matter of hyperlinks or webs of networks, and if so, how do digital hyperlinks and webs differ from those that are manifest in other forms?
Happy to be part of the HASTAC community.
Cheers to all.