CFP: PMLA Special Issue, Varieties of Digital Humanities

I want to call attention to the opportunity to publish your work in the leading journal in literary studies.  Miriam Posner and I will be co-editing a special issue on digital humanities, and we very much welcome varieties of approaches as well as topics.  PMLA has a very strenuous and blind peer review process that gives ample feedback–usually, it’s well worth this feedback even if excellent work, in the end, doesn’t make the difficult cut.  But that also means, in other words, that it’s not just up to the two of us to decide what will actually appear in the journal.  We would be happy to advise on the kinds of submissions you might send in.  Feel free to reach out at booth@virginia.edu.  Here is the CFP wording that appears at the above site, where you may find instructions on how to prepare and submit the 9000-word-maximum document file.

Deadline for submissions: 12 March 2018

Coordinators: Alison Booth (Univ. of Virginia) and Miriam Posner (Univ. of California, Los Angeles)

Digital humanities (DH) may not be a full-fledged discipline, but it has advanced beyond “the next big thing” to become a reality on many campuses. Like many fields that have received a great deal of attention, DH derives energy from internal combustion and external friction—dissenters, supporters, and detractors see different sides of what may after all be too large a variety of practice to cohere as a field in the future. This moment, then, seems a good time to ask, What is next for DH? And what can we learn from what has come before?

PMLA invites essays that will help assess the past of DH, outline its current state, and point to its future directions among diverse participants, allies, and critics. The special issue welcomes well-informed critical essays that articulate varieties of digital experience with DH as it is commonly understood and as it is practiced in a more expansive, even contested, way, including but not limited to the following topics: game studies; digital narrative and poetry; social media and blogging; digital arts, including music and theater; digital pedagogy in languages, literatures, and writing (teaching with technology, e-portfolios, immersive technology, mapping assignments); textual editing; edited digital archives of manuscript or print materials; natural language processing and textual analysis of large corpora such as historical newspapers or a genre or a literary era; prosopographies, from ancient to modern; 3-D printing or modeling; virtual reality and photogrammetry documenting cultural heritage sites or artifacts; mapping and time lines to visualize trends in cultural or literary history; issues of copyright and commercial databases; theories and histories of digital technologies and their industrial and cultural impact; the growing field of criticism on digital scholarship and institutional change; advocacy or cultural criticism oriented toward new media and transformative practice.

The PMLA Editorial Board welcomes collaborative or single-author essays that take note of digital humanities of these or other varieties, whether centered on education or other spheres, whether ephemeral or long-standing. Submissions that consider a specific project should go beyond reporting on its methods and findings and emphasize its implications for digital literature and language scholarship. Of particular interest are reflections on DH as practiced beyond North America and Europe. Issues and themes might include accessibility, sustainability, standards of evidence, transforming the academic career, changing or pursuing further the abiding questions in the discipline. Histories, predictions, and manifestos may be welcome, but all essays should be accessible and of interest to the broad PMLA readership.

 

https://www.mla.org/Publications/Journals/PMLA/Submitting-Manuscripts-to-PMLA

Alison Booth is Professor of English and Academic Director of the Scholars’ Lab at the University of Virginia.  Her books include Homes and Haunts: Touring Writers’ Shrines and Countries (Oxford UP, 2016), How to Make It as a Woman: Collective Biographical History from Victoria to the Present (2004), and Greatness Engendered: George Eliot and Virginia…

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