AHA links

As some of you know, I’m participating in some obscure local historians’ get-together at the weekend… oh, and doing this. This post is really just a handy place to put a bunch of links that I might find useful. (And I’m just copying the smart example set by scribblingwoman.)

I plan to focus on a theme of conversations and collaborations: so if you have any interesting thoughts to offer, you’re welcome to leave a comment. (If you’re really smart, you might get a mention on Saturday. If that’s any kind of incentive.) And if you’re at the session and have anything you want to add afterwards, you can use the comments for that too. I may not have time to post about the experience for a while.










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7 Responses to AHA links

  1. coturnix says:

    Wow! The “Moron” post! What do you have in mind? I have posted a much longer/better post on the whole affair a few weeks later.

  2. Kristine says:

    First of all, best wishes for the new year to all! I feel honoured to be included in the “conversations and collaborations” list of links, and I must say that the interaction in that series of post on early modern forensics was one of the most exciting things in my young career as a blogger. I have one small comment to contribute: it has probably been said before, but I feel that the subject of interdisciplinarity should perhaps not remain undiscussed in a session on conversation and collaboration. A literary historian myself, I very much enjoy the exchanges with early modern historians in the blogosphere. Although literary studies since the 1980s have of course become strongly influenced by the new historicism and cultural materialism, and have become much more interdisciplinary, institutional structures within universities and also at conferences still enforce boundaries between the various disciplines. The open structure of the internet offers a chance to cross such boundaries with more ease than in ‘real’ university life, I think.

  3. Sharon says:

    coturnix: I don’t plan to say much about it – I might not get that far anyway, depending on the timing. It’s just (if I do get to it) to draw attention to it as an issue and also to note how quickly and vigorously bloggers responded (which is related to the point of the theme…).

    kristine: you snuck in there while I was writing this! That’s a really nice point I hadn’t thought about.

  4. Ancarett says:

    What an excellent idea, Sharon!

    Regarding conversations and collaboration, I would also point out that blogging has helped many people ease the transition from grad school into their post-graduate life: in some ways, the old saw “on the internet, nobody knows you’re a dog” — http://www.unc.edu/depts/jomc/academics/dri/idog.html — works to let ideas and academic interests connect across the divide of academic ranks and farflung institutions.

    For web links, I’d also add a link to Google Scholar (http://scholar.google.com ) which isn’t entirely useful in our field but has the advantage of open access. There are many wonderful new databases and sources available online but we’re already running up against questions of accessibility (does your institution have access to the New DNB? to EEBO? etc.) that I think that’s an important question to consider.

    Finally, enjoy the AHA!

  5. rob says:

    Why not contrast blogging with a generically quite different counter-example LIKE
    Imaging the French Revolution. It has a discussion section which I think is well worth comparing with the mode of discussion of blogs/comments.

    It’s much more like a considered, transcribed newsgroup conversation than a blog conversation, which has obvious advantages (more clearly structured answers, imho) and disadvantages (a bit too stilted, a bit too published-academic in the stylistics of the discourses – e.g. footnotes, correct punctuation, polite argument). The fact that it is retrospectively structured into heirarchical forms also interests me as a counter-example. AS DOES the presence of correct-name author biographies to serve as authorisation. And the cliqueyness…

    In fact, I think it’s a goldmine counter-example of how a web-based discussion has/can/should work. So there!

  6. Mavis says:

    I just wanted to pop in and say hi… so… Hi!

  7. Sharon says:

    Not sure about ‘Mavis’ (are you real or a strange spammer?), but thanks to everyone for your thoughts and suggestions. (I can’t remember now if any of them explicitly made it into my presentation. These events fry my brain.)

    I seem to recall that I talked about the importance for me of discussions within blogs (in comment threads) and between blogs (often aided and abetted by that unsung hero the trackback) in a couple of ways: 1) helping to get things going when I’m starting on new research, with suggestions for reading and sources and approaches; 2) unexpected conversations that can start up around topics I already know something about and post on in order to communicate beyond the usual academic circles. With examples. I thought that would be more fun.

    The session as a whole was really diverse and quite hard to pin down (so a pretty good parallel for the current academic blogosphere, really, and personally I hope that continues). And I’ve mislaid my notes, such as they were.

    I’ve seen it blogged here as well as some thoughts generated by the session. But I may have missed quite a lot this week, so if anyone has seen any more posts about or inspired by it, send in the links!

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