Digital Humanities at Georgetown

As part of the Digital Humanities Panel, an interdisciplinary group of Georgetown faculty shared examples, methods, and ideas about how to build a network of resources to support digital humanities efforts across campus. In one example, Michael Ferreira (Spanish & Portuguese) collaborated with Mark Davies (BYU) to make the "O Corpus do Português" (a Portuguese corpus.) Seeking to make the corpus as diverse and representative as possible, Ferreira demonstrated how the project allows users to search 45 million words in almost 57,000 Portuguese texts from the 1300s to the 1900s. His hope is that the project allows scholars to compare Brazilian and European Portuguese, and he gave examples of how the corpus can be used not only for linguistic purposes, but historical purposes as well. Adam Rothman (History) showed attendees the Georgetown Slavery Archive—a repository of materials relating to the Maryland Jesuits, Georgetown University, and slavery supported by the Archives Subgroup of the Georgetown University Working Group on Slavery, Memory, and Reconciliation. He explained the challenge of making the information useful for visitors to the website. "Right now there is very little analysis, very little storytelling. The archive is really just documents, and they don’t speak for themselves. The next step is to give guidance," Rothman said. He shared plans to add more interpretation and analysis to the archive in order to transform the project, and to attract an NEH grant to expand and bring more resources. Salwa Ismail (Library Information Technology) advised faculty on technological resources such as Digital Georgetown. She encouraged attendees to learn about available tools at Georgetown that can aid faculty in creating digital projects such as "O Corpus do Português" and the Georgetown Slavery Archive. “Digital humanities projects rely on tech expertise to make it accessible and discoverable,” Ismail said, and the library is there to help.

As part of the Digital Humanities Panel, an interdisciplinary group of Georgetown faculty shared examples, methods, and ideas about how to build a network of resources to support digital humanities efforts across campus. In one example, Michael Ferreira (Spanish & Portuguese) collaborated with Mark Davies (BYU) to make the “O Corpus do Português” (a Portuguese corpus.) Seeking to make the corpus as diverse and representative as possible, Ferreira demonstrated how the project allows users to search 45 million words in almost 57,000 Portuguese texts from the 1300s to the 1900s. His hope is that the project allows scholars to compare Brazilian and European Portuguese, and he gave examples of how the corpus can be used not only for linguistic purposes, but historical purposes as well.

Adam Rothman (History) showed attendees the Georgetown Slavery Archive—a repository of materials relating to the Maryland Jesuits, Georgetown University, and slavery supported by the Archives Subgroup of the Georgetown University Working Group on Slavery, Memory, and Reconciliation. He explained the challenge of making the information useful for visitors to the website. “Right now there is very little analysis, very little storytelling. The archive is really just documents, and they don’t speak for themselves. The next step is to give guidance,” Rothman said. He shared plans to add more interpretation and analysis to the archive in order to transform the project, and to attract an NEH grant to expand and bring more resources.

Salwa Ismail (Library Information Technology) advised faculty on technological resources such as Digital Georgetown. She encouraged attendees to learn about available tools at Georgetown that can aid faculty in creating digital projects such as “O Corpus do Português” and the Georgetown Slavery Archive. “Digital humanities projects rely on tech expertise to make it accessible and discoverable,” Ismail said, and the library is there to help.