Sign in or register
for additional privileges

Teaching and Learning Multimodal Communications

Alyssa Arbuckle, Alison Hedley, Shaun Macpherson, Alyssa McLeod, Jana Millar Usiskin, Daniel Powell, Jentery Sayers, Emily Smith, Michael Stevens, Authors

You appear to be using an older verion of Internet Explorer. For the best experience please upgrade your IE version or switch to a another web browser.

Building as Writing: Outsourcing Scholarship

Of course, the irony in this emphasis on building is that if building tools is a form of scholarship, then scholarship risks being outsourced to the very tools scholars build. Ramsay and Rockwell identify a fear brewing amongst humanities scholars that scholarly work will become automated, its processes black-boxed, and in turn its work yet again reduced to its output. Yet, as these scholars also note: “the separation between writing, conceiving, and transforming is hardly clear-cut” (82). Which is to say: it is nearly impossible or—perhaps more aptly put—irresponsible to sever process from product. Yet this split is precisely what happens when the processes of how something is made become opaque or readable by only experts or computers.

This issue once again raises the larger question of how to evaluate any humanities scholarship in a market-driven culture, one which is increasingly more sympathetic to the sciences due to the measurable output and usability of their work. In this sense, building as a mode of scholarship provides both a threat and a solution. In many ways, it may have the effect of encouraging the humanities to pay closer attention to the processes which make scholarly work possible, all the while threatening to reduce these processes (which—as Ramsay and Rockwell point out—quickly become opaque with the use of computers) to the results they produce.

The image provided here is of a graphic made by Daniel Powell using Gephi, an open-source visualization tool for data-driven research.

Authors: Alyssa McLeod, Jana Millar Usiskin, Emily Smith
Word Count: 243
Comment on this page

Discussion of "Building as Writing: Outsourcing Scholarship"

Add your voice to this discussion.

Checking your signed in status ...

Previous page on path Analysis, page 7 of 17 Next page on path