Courtesy of DUMBARTON OAKS
PS M.A. Candidate Cati Kalinoski was recently invited to take part in the Dumbarton Oaks Plant Humanities Program in collaboration with JSTOR Labs previously to be held in Washington D.C. but which has now moved virtual. It is an intensive six-week experience focusing on plant cultural histories and creating plant-focused narratives in digital formats. Cati is excited to be bringing her research into exhibition practices of extinct plants to this new collaborative space!
The course aims to provide both a foundation for further interdisciplinary investigations into plants and an introduction to digital humanities skills, structured in two parts. The first will consist of three weeks of seminars, guest lectures, and instructional videos introducing different perspectives on the cultural histories of plants from the early modern period to the present. We are aiming for a brisk pace of instruction and a rigorous and diverse curriculum. Students will be introduced to key concepts and related scholarly literature; online resources and databases on plants; and research with special collections. During the following three weeks, students will undertake an assisted, remote team project in groups of three or four. Following basic training in digital humanities skills, participants will assemble plant-focused narratives and related visual resources (images, maps, etc.) for the Plant Humanities digital workbench developed jointly by Dumbarton Oaks and JSTOR Labs.
Dumbarton Oaks says of their program "The Plant Humanities Initiative integrates digital humanities with scholarly programming, building on the strengths of the two partner organizations, Dumbarton Oaks and JSTOR Labs. A product of this collaboration is a digital platform that will highlight rare and unique materials in the Dumbarton Oaks rare book collection and connect these materials to Global Plants and other primary and secondary digitized sources through interactive and visually engaging storytelling. Our hope is that by bringing together different resources related to plants, this endeavor will generate new research questions. To develop the content for the digital platform, Dumbarton Oaks offers new research and professional development opportunities for early-career humanists through an array of scholarly programs."