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Posts under tag: Open Journal Systems

February 11, 2011

Lollini unveils new Digital Humanities journal

Detail from the journal's homepage banner

Professor of Italian Massimo Lollini has just published the first issue of a new online journal, Humanist Studies and the Digital Age. The journal is dedicated to understanding changes in the writing and reading brought about by new technologies of the word. It is one of the first fruits of the new Open Access Journal Publishing Service that is a collaboration between the UO and Oregon State.

The journal’s first issue, co-edited by Lollini with Professors Leah Middlebrook and Nathalie Hester, is the result of a symposium held at the UO in April 2010 titled “Francesco Petrarca from Manuscript to Digital Culture.” The publication features articles by by a number of RL colleagues, including professors Leah Middlebrook, Nathalie Hester, and Amanda Powell, as well as graduate students Ana-Maria M’Enesti, Luis Gonzalo Portugal, Nobuko Wingard. RL alum Enrico Vettore (PhD 2005) and Prof. Warren Ginsberg (UO English) also contributed articles.

Change in the way we create and transmit knowledge is nothing new, writes Lollini in the editor’s introduction to the first issue, which focuses on the evolution from manuscript to print to digital text of 14th-century Italian writer Francis Petrarch’s work Rerum vulgarium fragmenta. But with every major change comes resistance. Back in the 5th century BCE, Socrates himself was a harsh critic of a new technology: writing. His skepticism of the new technology and the effect he feared it would have on a new generation of scholars sounds a lot like current critiques of digital culture’s effect on today’s youth:

they will be hearers of many things and will have learned nothing; they will appear to be omniscient and will generally know nothing; they will be tiresome company, having the show of wisdom without the reality.

Because writing and other technologies of language are so important to the way we live, it is important that scholars of language and literature pay serious attention to these transformations. Humanist Studies and the Digital Age is a way for scholars to continue to grapple with these issues in a rigorous yet open format that is accessible to all.

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