Editors’ note: snap reflections

On April 21 2016, The Still Point Journal, that is, we, published a new blog post:

We invite creative responses to the experiences of working across analogue and digital, and between real and virtual worlds…

Two little words in our call for submissions for Digital Selves in Research – “across” and “between” – held more meaning than we realised at the time. So much of what our contributors have expressed, and so much of our own experience in organising this symposium, hides within those words. We seem to be recognising, in so many nuanced ways, that exploring the digital and the real isn’t about choosing one position or the other. We’re the hybrid generation, the researchers learning how to use the internet for scholarship. Is this what a period of transition feels like?

Digital Selves Ed post 1

Our invitation provoked myriad responses, but they all avoided this digital/IRL binary we could not help but set up. Our own vocabulary during this symposium has felt increasingly useless, out of time and place. We are still grappling with how to talk about the experience of being human, being researchers and practitioners in 2016 – but we hope this symposium has pushed our language further. Continue reading

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[Command-Shift-4] McLuhan

 

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How to Take a Screenshot of Part of Your Screen on a Mac

I began researching Marshall McLuhan on the internet to explore Marshall McLuhan’s ideas about how the internet effects research. The symmetry was pleasing.

1. medium is message google

One thing the internet tells you pretty quickly is that McLuhan did not say or think anything about the internet because he died in 1980. But Amazon customer Mark B. Cohen assured me we could still learn something.

6. Amazon comment

You can be a scholar on the internet, but why be a scholar when customers get better treatment? Sometimes it’s easier to treat the object of your research as a commodity. Continue reading

“Let Scholarship Fly Free”: Keynote Interview with Dr Caroline Edwards

This interview between Dr Caroline Edwards and James Fisher took place on 13th July in London, after her talk at the School of Advanced Study: ‘Social scholar: transforming scholarship in the digital environment’.

We chat about the way the digital environment shapes us as individual scholars, challenges academic traditions and offers new opportunities for ‘Open Access’ in humanities scholarship.

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Designed by Becky Chilcott for The Open Library of Humanities (under a CC BY 3.0 unproved license)

Dr Caroline Edwards is a Lecturer in Modern & Contemporary Literature at Birkbeck, University of London. Her research and teaching specialisms are in 21st century literature and critical theory, science fiction and post-apocalyptic narratives, Marxist aesthetics, and utopianism. She is currently completing her first monograph, Fictions of the Not Yet: Time in the 21st Century British Novel, and has recently co-edited two collections on contemporary writers – Maggie Gee: Critical Essays (Gylphi, 2015) and China Miéville: Critical Essays (Gylphi 2015).

In January 2013 Dr Caroline Edwards founded the Open Library of Humanities (OLH) with Dr Martin Paul Eve. The OLH launched in September 2015 as a humanities megajournal and multi-journal publishing platform – for more info, visit: https://www.openlibhums.org/

Follow @the_blochian and visit Dr Caroline Edwards’ website

No Jumper in Nowhere

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May I present you a conversation of two women in the Sahara.

K: I really saw that red body in the dark, it just disappeared in front of me! Right here! Then it was pitch dark again! It was so quiet, nothing was here!

J: But who was that? No one dresses in red here. I was here 5 minutes after you came. There was nothing red as you say. How do you know you saw it?

K: I knew because I experienced it, with my eyes! I am telling you that there was a gigantic red body, a female of some sort. How can you not see it, if you were here 5 minutes ago?? Do I seem like I’m not making sense to you?

J: What I am saying is that if I am here, at where you saw it, at almost at the same time, if it is so big, I would have seen it, but I did not. Just logically speaking. I think you have it wrong. It simply doesn’t exist… and you appear exhausted to me. Are you sure you weren’t spacing out this time?

K: You are again just judging me based on your ‘logic’, but this time I truly felt it’s presence. Not because my body is tired. My mind is very clear that the red person was here bouncing in front of me. I can feel my body reacting to it!

J: Well, are you paying attention? I told you the reasons, and I can’t relate to you at all. Now that we don’t get to see it, it doesn’t exist. So instead of insisting, I suggest that you go and rest.

As we have already noticed: to K there was, to J there was not.

K was the sole witness of “the red body” in the desert, when the body of the former athletic high-jumper Giota P was presented digitally in the open field momentarily. Does it matter if the red body only existed in K’s experience? Not until K started to share her memories with others, she realised that the red body is isolated in her subjective territory. Her experience did not extend to J at all. The moment K started sharing, J registered a judgement in her mind to make sense of K’s non-sense. J simply connected the dots that 1) she did not see anything at the same time and place, 2) therefore she rejected the existence of the red body (and K’s experience) as a subjective conclusion, 3) so K is in doubt and messed with her feelings (again). If the red body was ’there’, it might have taken on a life of its own in K’s mind. Now, may I raise a question with curiosity, what if the red body was never witnessed?


Video and text © Yarli Allison L, a Hong Kong-Canadian born, London-based artist whose work explores psychological and emotional conditions with a primary focus on distant states of displacement, disconnection, and detachment. Her multidisciplinary practice traverses sculpture, performance, video, installation, painting, and sound. In the working process, she relies heavily on physical strength and long durations of repetitive manipulation of materials as an attempt to re-live between states of dissociation and reality. These physical and psychological tensions are often represented in Yarli’s performances, where audiences are invited to interact with the artist and object(s). http://yarliallison.com

#DigitalSelves Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon: Friday 29 July

Join the conversation @stillpointLDN   //   #DigitalSelves   //   Join our Facebook event

As part of our inaugural online symposium Digital Selves in Research, we’re hosting a Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon at the beautiful Maughan Library, Chancery Lane, from 3-5:45pm on Friday 29 July.

Inspired by previous ‘Wikithons’ from around the world – including Art+Feminism‘s annual global event, which last year added a staggering 334 pages for women artists – we will be getting together to create or improve Wikipedia articles on the subjects closest to our hearts: from medieval sci-fi to Victorian agriculture to contemporary beat poetry.

Why are we embarking on such a project? Simply put, we love to share our research, and Wikipedia is the ultimate open-access journal. Quite often, our research pays loving attention to under-studied subjects, people, stories, and places: whether they are women, people of colour, from outside of Western Europe or the US. We might also be making ‘new’ discoveries: names, dates, works of literature or art that have been hidden away, uncatalogued and invisible in plain sight in archives, libraries, or homes. And, let’s be honest, Wikipedia is still a point of call for many of us when a key date or name has popped out of our heads – so why not use it like our own researcher’s notebook?

The Maughan Library will be a great base, with access to online and real life journals, books, and a music and DVD collection. We will also have some snack supplies to keep us going! Best of all, post editing we’ll all relocate to Ye Olde Cock Tavern, 22 Fleet St, London EC4Y 1AA, for the symposium after-party 6-8pm.

Take part in the #DigitalSelves Edit-a-thon: in person

Everyone is welcome to drop in any time between 3-5:30pm at the Maughan Library but please note: if you are a student or researcher at any of these institutions, you must bring your ID card.

If you are NOT registered at an institution on the list, just drop us an email with your full name, contact details, and what time you’ll be arriving to blog[at]thestillpointjournal[dot]com.

Editing Wikipedia is simple, and members of the blog team will be on hand to help. You don’t have to do any planning before the session, although it would save some time if you scope out which pages you’re interested in that might need a little TLC, what books and journals are available in the King’s library catalogue, and if you can register on Wikipedia before you arrive.

Take part in the #DigitalSelves Edit-a-thon: wherever you are!

Can’t make it to the Maughan? Wherever you are (out of London, or out of the UK!) you are very welcome to join the edit-a-thon virtually. We will be twittering and facebooking our progress and we would love to hear from far-flung participants. Remember we’re on British Summer Time, 3-5:30pm.

Whether you’re planning on taking part at the Maughan or from wherever you are in the world, we’d love to hear your plans and progress. Whether you make just a tiny reference edit, or end up creating an encyclopedic series of new pages, we want to keep track of all the knowledge shared on the 29 July.

Tweet us @stillpointldn or use the tag #DigitalSelves. You can also join our Facebook event. Even simpler, comment below.

Get the details in your diaries, start gathering your ideas, and we can’t wait to meet you and your Wikipedia pet projects.

#DigitalSelves Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon: meet up for researchers to edit Wikipedia pages together @ The Maughan Library, Chancery Lane, London WC2A 1LR.

Find out what else is going on, see our full symposium programme.

For the uninitiated, here’s Wikipedia’s own wiki on how to get started with editing (yes, it’s a wiki about a wiki), or take a look at the video below.

#DigitalSelves Programme: 25-29 July

The Still Point Blog is hosting the online symposium Digital Selves in Research, July 25th-29th 2016, exploring the experience of researching across analogue and digital worlds.

the internet and research

We are excited to publish a range of creative responses to our Call for Submissions over five days, in text, video, and image. The provisional programme is below (subject to change, as usual).

We deliberately mimic the format of traditional conferences IRL to manufacture the experience of participating in a collective event, blurring the boundary with physical meet ups. With this spirit, we encourage visitors and readers to comment and respond on the blog, or via Facebook, Twitter, or elsewhere.

Follow @stillpointLDN   //   #DigitalSelves   //   Join Facebook event

Programme

Monday 25th July 

9am     Keynote: Max Saunders (Director, Arts & Humanities Research Institute) & Ego-Media

1pm     Yarli Allison L [VIDEO]

5pm     Kim Sherwood, He’s Not Dead Yet, Keep Scrolling 

Tuesday 26th July 

9am     Ellen Davies, In Paris, 1913 

1pm     Susan Francis, Stranger is Typing [VIDEO]

5pm     Amy Lidster, Rethinking Digital Editions: A Movable Archive of Readings 

Wednesday 27th July 

9am     Footnotes on KCL Radio [Listen LIVE 9-10am, podcast available later]

1pm     Tianmei Chen, Inspiration from London

5pm     James Fisher, [Command-Shift-4] McLuhan 

Thursday 28th July 

9am     Daniel Willis, Fieldwork a la limeña 

1pm     Twitter Hour #DigitalSelves @stillpointLDN

Friday 29th July 

9am     Keynote: Dr. Matthew Hayler, Lecturer in Post-1980 Literature (Digital Humanities, Cognitive Humanities, Technology and Human Enhancement) [VIDEO]

1pm     Editors’ Reflections

3pm     Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon: meet up for researchers to edit Wikipedia pages together @ The Maughan Library, Chancery Lane, London WC2A 1LR 

6pm     Drinks Reception / After Party @ Ye Olde Cock Tavern, 22 Fleet St, London EC4Y 1AA

If you would like to attend our IRL events or have any questions, please email blog [at] stillpointjournal.com