University of Sussex
1468-229X.12969.pdf (1.17 MB)
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State of the field: digital history

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-06-12, 09:22 authored by C Annemieke Romein, Max Kemman, Julie M Birkholz, James Baker, Michel de Gruijter, Albert Meroño-Peñuela, Thorsten Ries, Ruben Ros, Stefania Scagliola
Computing and the use of digital sources and resources is an everyday and essential practice in current academic scholarship. The present article gives a concise overview of approaches and methods within digital historical scholarship, focussing on the question: How have the Digital Humanities evolved and what has that evolution brought to historical scholarship? We begin by discussing techniques in which data are generated and machine searchable, such as OCR/HTR, born-digital archives, computer vision, scholarly editions, and Linked Data. In the second section, we provide examples of how data is made more accessible through quantitative text and network analysis. We close with a section on the need for hermeneutics and data-awareness in digital historical scholarship. The technologies described in this article have had varying degrees of effect on historical scholarship, usually in indirect ways. For example, technologies such as OCR and search engines may not be directly visible in a historical argument; however, these technologies do shape how historians interact with sources and whether sources can be accessed at all. It is with this article that we aim to start to take stock of the digital approaches and methods used in historical scholarship which may serve as starting points for scholars to understand the digital turn in the field and how and when to implement such approaches in their work.


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  • History Publications

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