Note to faculty: if you know of courses relevant to the digital humanities slated to be offered at Rutgers, please write the initiative director, Paul Israel.

Spring 2018

Byrne 01:090:101:28 (13681). Data Mining in the Humanities. Undergraduate. Francesca Giannetti.

Comp Lit 16:195:516:01 Topics in Comparative Literature: Novel/ Medium—Julio Cortázar and Others. Graduate. Andrew Parker.

Tuesday 4:30-7:10 pm, AB-4052 (CAC). While the availability of mass print has long been recognized as a condition of the novel’s inception as a genre, most scholars continue to approach the novel as though its media histories were extrinsic and contingent. The nineteenth-century serialized novel—with each monthly installment concluding with a climactic event—is one well-studied exception, of course. But there are many other exceptions that take us beyond the novel’s print forms, from the radio drama to the telenovela to the comic book to the novel written after a film. This seminar will ask whether these exceptions might generate a rule: what if the novel’s relation to its media can be considered a constitutive feature of the genre, an inherent part of what makes a novel a novel? While we will test this hypothesis with examples drawn from a range of periods, languages, and narrative styles (many of which will be chosen by the seminar’s own students), our main text will be Julio Cortázar’s 1963 novel Rayuela/Hopschotch, which we will read retrospectively as an experiment in hypertext avant la lettre. (The instructor is at work on a collaborative, bilingual, digital edition of this novel.)

Comp Lit 16:195:519:M1 Topics in Comparative Literature and Other Fields: Virtual Travel and the Panoptic Self: For an Archaeology of Virtual Reality in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth-Century. Graduate. Massimo Riva.

Six Friday meetings (Jan 19, Feb 2 and 9, Mar 9 and 30, Apr 20), 4:30-7:10 pm, AB-5050 (CAC). Cross list: 16:560:691:01. In this six-Friday seminar, we will explore an archaeology of virtual reality in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries through five case studies focused on Italy as a “virtual” country and on historical figures of Italian modernity, representative of broader social, political and cultural dynamics. Each case-study focuses on an optical tool or spectacle: the mondo nuovo or cosmorama, the polemoscope, the magic lantern/ phantasmagoria, the moving panorama, and stereoscopic photography. Primarily designed, or adopted, for entertainment and education, these media have this in common: they let the user/spectator see the world in a different dimension by impacting sensory perceptions in ways not dissimilar from those of our contemporary digital media. Each case study thus cuts across the fields of literature, art history, military history, the social history of technology, media archaeology, mobility studies, in order to explore five genealogical dimensions of the modern “panoptic Self”: virtual travel, social voyeurism, phantasmagoric consumption, instant history and stereoscopic memory are presented here as defining aspects of modern popular culture. Taught in English.

History 01:506:299 History Workshop: Immigration Case Files and Stories of Restriction and Deportation. Undergraduate. Andrew Urban.

During the Spring 2018 semester, the focus of the “History Workshop” will be on primary sources that document the United States’ attempts to regulate and restrict immigration from 1882, when the first Chinese Exclusion Act was passed, to 1965, when nationality and racial quotas were eliminated from federal law. Over the course of the semester, students will use these sources and insights gleaned from secondary readings to curate an online exhibition that examines major themes in US immigration history.

History 01:506:303 Digital History: Scarlet and Black Project. Undergraduate. Jesse Bayker.

Wednesdays, 1:10-4:10pm. This course offers an overview of digital history as a field, including how it originated out of the fields of public history and humanities computing. Students will examine the theory and debates that guide digital history practice. We will explore a range of tools for historical research and the dissemination of historical information to varied audiences, including digital exhibits, mobile applications for historic sites, digital archives, research databases, and digital mapping tools. The course includes a practical component in connection with the Scarlet and Black Project. Scarlet and Black is a public history project that explores the experiences of African Americans and Native Americans at Rutgers University. Students will work collaboratively to develop the Scarlet and Black Project Digital Archive using the Omeka platform.

Spring 2017

Byrne Seminar 01:090:101 28 15148. Data Mining in the Humanities. Undergraduate. Francesca Giannetti.

Fall 2016

American Studies 050:333:01 Cultures of Consumption. Undergraduate. Andrew Urban.

This course surveys the cultural and social impact of markets, and changes to how we consume goods and services, from 1492 to the present. We’ll examine, among other topics, the historic tensions and conflicts between societies defined by the production of goods and services  and those organized around consumption; the relationship between consumer practices and the condition of laborers; the impact that consumption has on the environment and different ecologies; how consumerism has empowered, exploited, and governed ideas about race, gender, and sexuality; how consumption has changed with the development of the advertising industry; and, the politics and economics of debt. This class will combine serious analysis with more “playful” fieldwork and artistic interpretation. Activities will include a trip to NYC to examine various stores as living habitats for consumerism, and the maintenance of a class website where we will deconstruct the different logics of marketing. Cross-listed with History 512:333:01.

Spring 2016

American Studies (RU-N) 26:050:522 Introduction to Digital Public Humanities. Graduate. Mary Rizzo.

Mondays, 5:30-8:10pm. What happens when we make digital humanities public? What about when we take the public humanities and make them digital? This in-person graduate seminar will explore the history, theory and methods of the digital humanities and the public humanities and, especially, their intersection. We will use and critically examine digital tools like Omeka, mapping software, content management systems, and social media to put theory into practice. By the end of the semester, students will have conceptualized a digital public humanities project, written a grant application for potential funding, and built a prototype.

English 358:215 Introduction to 21st Century Literature. Undergraduate. Richard Miller.

What will emerge as the dominant literary form of the 21st century? Will it be the graphic novel? Or the serialized drama (i.e. Breaking Bad,Orange is the New Black, etc.)? Or the ephemera of the web (i.e., blog posts, fan fiction, youtube videos)? Or video games (i.e., Fallout, Assassins Creed, etc.) Or creative nonfiction? Or will it remain the novel?

Humans are hard-wired to be storytellers, but storytelling itself has been transformed by the shift from paper to the screen as the assumed final destination for human expression. This shift in the default technology for human expression has occurred around the stunning act of violence that inaugurated the beginning of the 21st century: the attacks on September 11th, 2001. Accordingly, we will consider how the technological change and the launch of The War on Terror together have altered both the how and the what of literary expression. Our ultimate goal is to consider what forms literacy, “the literary,” and aesthetics take in post-9/11 literature.

History 506:303 Mapping the Past: A Spatial History of the United States. Undergraduate. Cameron Blevins.

Fall 2015

American Studies 01:050:400 Advanced Topics in American Studies: Public Histories of Detention and Mass Incarceration. Undergraduate. Andrew Urban.

This course gives students the opportunity to work on a public history exhibition and series of digital projects, in collaboration with the Humanities Action Lab, New Jersey Digital Highway, Newest Americans Project, and Seabrook Educational and Cultural Center, on the history of detention and mass incarceration in the United States. The resulting projects will be exhibited online and in museums and galleries across country – from New York City to Riverside, California to Nashville, Tennessee. This course’s contribution to the project will focus on the history of Seabrook Farms, a frozen foods’ processing facility and company town in southern New Jersey that housed and employed Japanese American and Japanese Peruvian detainees, migrant agricultural laborers contracted from the Caribbean and U.S. South, German POWS, and Estonian and other Eastern European refugees displaced by World War II.

Byrne Seminar 01:090:101 Section 42 Index 11453 Data Mining in the Humanities. Undergraduate. Francesca Giannetti.

Spring 2015

English 350:509 Literary Data: Some Approaches. Graduate. Andrew Goldstone.