Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 32, No. 599. Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London Hosted by King's Digital Lab www.dhhumanist.org Submit to: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: 2019-04-06 03:38:27+00:00 From: Jeremy Browne
Subject: Re: [Humanist] 32.596: pro & con... The article by Nan Z. Da linked from the Chronicle editorial is worth reading... https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/pdfplus/10.1086/702594 ...although I do not think all of the criticism is fair. As one who comes from the social sciences (I'm still on the editorial board for a US journal in education), I can tell you that scholars in that field are just as ignorant of the constraints of high-end inferential statistics. We can and should do better, but we're no worse than other fields that borrow statistical methods. However, I need someone to help me understand this argument at the end: "With regard to the overabundance argument, it is important to remember that many of the key examples come from corpora or texts that have already been read. CLS is really not dealing with nearly as much data or complexity (of the order that justifies the use of the tools they use) as authors like to think. Basic math also helps here: one million words roughly equals ten novels; one and a half billion represents about fifteen thousand novels, which at one novel a month will only take one thousand people one year to read. At the end of the day, the overabundance claim is not a legitimate argument in and of itself." Yes, 1,000 *could* theoretically read 15,000 books in a year, but are those 1,000 people getting together to talk about the 15 books they each read? Are they formulating arguments across those 15,000? (And, since they each read 15 *distinct* books, they have no overlap from which to compare their thoughts.) If not, then the argument--that computational methods are necessary to make some sense of "overabundance" of literature--is still legitimate. Or am I misreading that part? Jeremy M. Browne, PhD Associate Research Professor Coordinator, Digital Humanities and Technology Program College of Humanities Brigham Young University On 4/5/19, 12:44 AM, "Humanist" wrote: Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 32, No. 596. Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London Hosted by King's Digital Lab www.dhhumanist.org Submit to: email@example.com Date: 2019-04-05 00:55:54+00:00 From: Henry Schaffer Subject: DH - pro/con The Chronicle of Higher Education has some interesting perspectives on DH. Here are two opposing views - first the Editors Intro: In the last six months, a new front has opened in the often fiery disciplinary disputes over the role of quantitative methods in the humanities. The University of Chicago Press published two major new works of computational literary scholarship, Andrew Piper's *Enumerations: Data and Literary Study* and Ted Underwood's *Distant Horizons: Digital Evidence and Literary Change.* And this month Nan Z. Da harshly criticized what she called "computational literary studies" in the pages of *Critical Inquiry*. This week *The Chronicle Review* is featuring essays by Underwood and Da, arguing from either side of the conflict. We're also resurfacing some previous salvos in this war from our archive. -- The Editors Now for the two articles: Dear Humanists: Fear Not the Digital Revolution Advances in computing will benefit traditional scholarship -- not compete with it By Ted Underwood https://www.chronicle.com/article/Dear-Humanists-Fear-Not-the/245987 The Digital Humanities Debacle Computational methods repeatedly come up short. By Nan Z. Da https://www.chronicle.com/article/The-Digital-Humanities-Debacle/245986 Some articles in the Chronicle are labelled "Premium" and behind a paywall. But often higher ed libraries have a subscription which enables access from either the library or the campus. I've barely started reading the two articles, so I may comment on the content later. --henry schaffer _______________________________________________ Unsubscribe at: http://dhhumanist.org/Restricted List posts to: firstname.lastname@example.org List info and archives at at: http://dhhumanist.org Listmember interface at: http://dhhumanist.org/Restricted/ Subscribe at: http://dhhumanist.org/membership_form.php
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