Short-Term Projects

The Let's Help Kate Project
Our dear friend and colleague Kate Navichas is looking into feminist writing assignment for her dissertation. How can our new-found knowledge of archives help her organize her data? How would be design our feminist assignment archive that would be most useful to Kate in her research and for other feminist teachers who are looking for new and innovative assignments? In this week's readings, Kate Theimer emphasized the importance of context within archives; how then can our archive for (our) Kate address the issue of context, multiple femminisms, and the multiple authors who created these assignments?

Archives in WRT 205
Last semester, Jana (sorry to call you out) did a great job incorporating archival work in her WRT 105 class. We were all very much impressed. Can we follow in Jana's foot steps and incorporate archival work into the 205 curriculum? Could asking the students in class build an archive help teach them about academic research? What would be an appropriate thing to have them archive? How could archiving fit in well with the course goals, set by the Writing Department, for WRT 205?

Long Term Projects

Reading Digital Archives
When engaging with a digital archive, do some search terms and some search methods privilege some texts, media, design schemes more than others? When do people and don't people read when they use a digital archive? Do some design schemes encourage people to spend more time reading a text within an archive more than others? Do some design schemes encourage people to read a larger number or texts stored within the archive? How do we lead people to the most important information? What corners of the archive are most likely to go unexplored and why? This long term study would attempt to answer these questions, yielding better, more efficient, and more ethical digital archives.

Archives and the Limits of Language
In my opinion, the most persuasive arguments for the use of multimodal is that images, audio, and written language working with one another can help writers get closer to articulating the thing in and of itself that they're trying to write about. Words alone cannot encompass the totality of emotion. Though didital archives can connect us with non-written and/or multimodal texts, we're still very much dependent on using alphabetic language for search and navigating digital archives. What would it look like to use an image --rather than a word-- to search for similar image, alphabetic texts about the image, or audio clips that express similar feelings? This long term project would explore why and how people would want to use images or audio clip for searching digital archives, how to develop the software to search with images or sounds, and how the results of such searches are being used.