Whether you are a student of the humanities, or work in the profession. You have probably heard the term “Digital Humanities.” What you may not know is exactly how this concept is defined.
The truth is, a concrete definition has proved elusive, even to those who consider themselves experts in the field.
What we have done in this post is compiled a list of answers to the question: “What are the digital humanities?” from prominent institutions around the world. You can then come to your own conclusions. Leave a comment below to let us know what you think!
- “[Digital Humanities is] research that uses information technology as a central part of its methodology, for creating and/or processing data.” – The University of Oxford
- “Digital Humanities interprets the cultural and social impact of new media and information technologies – the fundamental components of the new information age – as well as creates and applies these technologies to answer cultural, social, historical, and philological questions, both those traditionally conceived and those only enabled by new technologies.” – UCLA
- “In the last ten years, I would have said…Digital Humanities is about bringing central questions about the nature of humanities to light. But now I believe Digital Humanities is coming of age. And in my opinion Digital Humanities has become an intrinsic part of the Humanities. Therefore Digital Humanities is the same as the Humanities.” – Douwe Zeldenrust
- “For some, the digital humanities are simply scholarly or pedagogical activities within the traditional humanities disciplines undertaken with digital tools. For others, the digital humanities involve a reconfiguration of traditional humanist activities, with an emphasis on interdisciplinarity and participation beyond specialist audiences.” – John Hopkins Sheridan Libraries
- “The digital Humanities remediates art(ifacts) through a digital lens. Digital Humanities stands at the intersection of art and science; it makes technology explicit in our understanding and interpretation of culture. Digital Humanities makes clear that the humanities and technology are inseparable. It calls our attention to form and function as it rearranges the traditional atoms of humanistic study into remixed bits for our consideration and play.” – Gerald R. Lucas
- “As an umbrella term for many kinds of technologically enhance scholarly work, DH has built up a lot of brand visibility, especially at research universities. But in the context in which I work, it seems more inclusive to call it digital liberal arts (DLA) with the assumption that we’ll lose the “digital” within a few years, once practices that seem innovative today become the ordinary methods of scholarship.” – Brian Taylor for the Chronicle of Higher Education
Want even more definitions? Try going to WhatIsDigitalHumanities.com. Over 500 responses from participants mean that you can click the link multiple times and see as many definitions as you have time for!