RICH Platform for Digital Humanities: The Use of Data-driven Methods and Techniques in the Humanities

Thursday 16 November 2023, 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

The RICH Platform for Digital Humanities is in the process of redeveloping itself. This academic year, we will host a series of informal lectures revolving around the use of data-driven methods and techniques in the humanities. How do we remove ’noise’ from our data? How do we move from sources to data? How do we transform data into something else? How do we interpret our findings? Such questions will be central in the presentations. There will be plenty of room for discussion with the invited speakers.

Thomas van Galen MA

How can historians effectively integrate results produced by digital corpus analysis and results that spring from a ‘traditional’ discourse analysis of ego documents? In my dissertation project, I distant-read 20th-century socialist periodicals (using Antconc and word vectors) and close-read correspondence to understand how socialists conceptualised international solidarity in transatlantic exchanges. In this talk, I illustrate how I used the digital interface Nodegoat to organise digital and archival data to make both types of data comparable and integrable. I will then invite further discussion on the challenges of combining digital and non-digital analysis in the humanities.

Thomas van Gaalen is a PhD Candidate at Radboud University. His project, Breaking borders: Transatlantic struggles over international solidarity, 1889–1939, analyses how international solidarity – a key tenet for early 20th century socialists – was reconceptualised and put into practice in transatlantic socialist exchanges occurring in Caribbean maritime hubs. He holds an RMA in history.

Dr Gleb Shmidt

Deeply rooted in liturgy, the reading of patristic sermons was a central spiritual practice in the Middle Ages. However, a systematic methodology to explore sermon collections, the main vehicle for patristic preaching, is still lacking. Since the collections reveal how medieval society interacted with the authority of the Fathers, PASSIM employs various digital methods (computer vision, measures of association, topic modelling) to provide insights into medieval compilation processes. The utmost goal is to understand the role and perception of the Fathers’s homiletic works in the medieval period, emphasising their evolving significance.

Gleb Schmidt is a postdoc at the ERC-funded project “Patristic Sermons in the Middle Ages” (PASSIM). His research focuses on the computational approaches in reception and transmission studies, with a specific focus on “bestselling” works.

Thursday 16 November 2023, 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Thomas van Galen, Gleb Shmidt
E 2.56