A Community of Curious Cats: Berkeley DH Working Group

I have a confession. I’ve attended DH conferences, worked as the ‘Digital Humanities Assistant’ on campus, and advocated for the development of DH resources here at Berkeley, but…I’m still working through what Digital Humanities actually means for me and my research.

The good thing is, this is exactly the purpose of the Berkeley Digital Humanities Working Group BDHWG (or #BDHWG for those following our updates on twitter, sorry for the long acronym) is a Townsend Center for Humanities working group started four years ago. Over the course of those years, we’ve held big events like the DH project fair, talks with Dan Cohen and Rob Nelson from DH institutes across the nation, co-organized HackFSM, and collaborated with regional DH groups and THATcamps.

These big events are a product of the immense diversity and creativity of our working group—a small to mid sized community of students, faculty, and staff interested in learning more about the digital humanities. In the spirit of ‘working groups’ we believe in the values of curiosity, collaboration, and diversity.

What is DH? image credit @Elijah_Meeks

Much like the changing field of Digital Humanities, each year BDHWG adapts to the dynamics and interests of the group. In the past years, BDHWG meetings consisted of guest speakers across campus and shared readings on debates regarding DH methodologies, new media, and digital research. In addition to these events, one of our goals this year is to provide a fun, supportive, and collaborative community to work through our own projects and curiosities.

This semester we’ll be holding regular (but informal!) ‘hacking days’ at the D-Lab 356 Barrows Hall, Mondays 1 – 2 PM. At these ‘peer office hours’ we will work on tutorials, troubleshoot tools, or BYOP (bring your own project). Some of the BDHWG hacking days consisted of experimenting with historical databases, adding a digital component to dissertations, and learning to code.

Join the fun at our upcoming meetings this Fall! All meetings are held at the D-lab convening room unless otherwise noted. BDHWG Google Calendar

  • Hacking Days (9/22, 10/6, 10/20, 11/3, 12/1)
  • Teaching DH: Exploring the Current Literature on DH (9/29)
  • Database Design + MySQL – Harrison Dekker (10/13)
  • XML and Its Uses – Scott Paul McGinnis (11/17)
  • Thinking Through Methodology & DH Projects (11/24)

Subscribe to our mailing list, check out our blog, and join us on the twitter verse #bdhwg.

Camille and I would love to hear more about what you would like from the group! Tweet at us @effusivelynerdy and @cindyanguyen

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