Call for Proposals: Intentionally Digital, Intentionally Black
What happens to digital humanities inquiry when we begin with Black culture, Black thought, and Black persons at the center of our endeavors? How does this shift challenge and expand both the humanities and the digital? What happens to Black and African American humanities research when we lead with the digital?
Interdisciplinary inquiry into both the online practices of black users and humanities research focused on black history and culture using digital tools has expanded in the past decade. Too often, this work happens on the margins of established disciplines, boundaries, and paradigms. Rather than arriving at black digital research as an afterthought or a tactic to achieve “diversity”, privileging black theory and black culture in our scholarship can provide alternate paradigms through which to understand the digital and the humanistic.
The first national conference of the African American Digital Humanities (AADHum) Initiative at the University of Maryland will explore how digital studies and digital humanities-based research, teaching, and community projects can center African American history and culture. AADHum invites submissions that may include scholarly inquiry into Black diasporic and African American uses of digital technologies; digital humanities projects that focus on black history and culture; race and digital theory; the intersection of black studies and digital humanities; information studies, cultural heritage, and community-based digital projects; pedagogical interventions; digital tools and artifacts; black digital humanities and memory; social media and black activism/movements, etc.
We invite submissions from within and outside the academy – students, faculty, librarians, independent scholars and community members – to actively participate in the conference!
- Proposals should be submitted online at https://www.conftool.pro/aadhum2018/
- Multiple proposal submissions (maximum of 3 submissions) from an individual or group are acceptable
- Selections and notifications will be made by mid-June 2018
- **The submission portal closed on April 15, 2018**
Types of Proposals
- Individual Papers. Please provide an abstract of 300-500 words and brief bio (75 words).
- Panels. Please provide a panel rationale of no more than 300 words, with individual paper abstracts (150-300 words) for up to 5 participants. Include titles and institutional affiliations for each participant.
- Digital Posters. Posters may present work on any relevant topic in any stage of development. Poster presentations are intended to be interactive, providing the opportunity to exchange ideas one-on-one with attendees. Please provide an abstract of 300-500 words.
- Tools/Digital Project Demonstration. Tools/Digital Project demonstrations are intended to showcase near-complete or completed work in an interactive environment. Please provide an abstract of 300-500 words. Abstracts should include 1) research significance, 2) stage (near complete/complete), 3) intervention of platform/project/tool 4) demonstration requirements (technology).
- Roundtables. Please provide a rationale of no more than 300 words, accompanied by a list of 4-5 participants (including title and institutional affiliation).
For each proposal, please include 3-5 keywords.
The AADHum Initiative (Synergies among African American History and Culture and Digital Humanities) at the University of Maryland is an initiative funded in part by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. AADHum seeks to prepare the next generation of scholars and scholarship by facilitating critical dialogue between digital humanists and African American centered humanities scholarship. The Initiative works to expand the reach of the digital humanities into African American/Africana/Black Studies while enriching humanities research with new methods, archives, and tools. This initiative enhances digital research while recognizing the expertise and knowledge from traditional humanities research and how it may propel digital scholarship forward. In so doing, it fosters a dialogue among a community of scholars from within and outside the academy as they venture into new research and pedagogical endeavors.
Examples of proposal topics
Abundance and deprivation
Africa and the Americas
Afro-futurism, -pragmatism and -pessimism
Agency and movements
Archives and archival practices
Arts and visual cultures
Blackness in everyday life
Digital slave studies
Empirical and epistemological considerations
Evaluating digital scholarship
Languages and literatures
Local and regional history
Memory and commemoration
Methods and tools
Migration and movement
Poetics and aesthetics
Space and place
Systems of institutional power
Within and beyond the academy