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Course Schedule

Course Schedule by Week


Week 1

Tuesday

Introduction to the Course

  • Introductions
  • What is the Atlantic World, and why is it a useful way to understand historical and contemporary experiences?
  • What are the Digital Humanities? Reply to statements from What is Digital Humanities? 
  • How is studying music, dance, and other embodied forms of communication different from studying written communication? How can digital methods help us make connections and represent these forms in new ways?

Thursday **Class meets in Computer Classroom**

READ 
Jane Desmond, “Embodying Difference: Issues in Dance and Cultural Studies,” Cultural Critique 26 (1993) [CR 33-63]

DUE 
Brainstorm and bring to class a list of four or five possible domain names for your webpage. Make sure there are no existing webpages at the addresses. Consider how you want to represent your academic and professional identities if you choose to maintain the website after the semester is over. Jot down some pros and cons about each of the potential addresses.


Week 2

Tuesday

READ
“Transgressive National Dances?” and “Maxixe, Milonga, Danzón” in National Rhythms, African Roots [1-32]

EXPLORE
“Dance Descriptions,” Stanford Dance

DUE
Dance Description Blog Post (300 words)

Thursday

READ

  1. Micol Seigel, “The Disappearing Dance: Maxixe’s Imperial Erasure,” in Black Music Research Journal 25 (2005) [CR 93-117]“The Drums of Epiphany (African Roots)” in National Rhythms, African Roots [91-113]
  2. Creative Commons, "About the Licenses"

DUE

  1. Comment on three colleagues' blog posts. What kind of images and descriptions does your colleague use to bring the movement to life? What questions do you have about the movement? What else would you like to know about the place, space, or time of the dance? 
  2. Jot down some questions you have about copyright and permissions for images and media.

Week 3

Tuesday

READ
“The Drums of Epiphany (African Roots)” in National Rhythms, African Roots [91-113]

EXPLORE
The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database

  1. Develop a well-bounded research question about the transatlantic slave trade. (Examples: How did the slave trade to Brazil and to Spanish America differ between 1810 and 1815? How did the gender ratio of slaves arriving to Brazil change between 1790 and 1810?).
  2. Decide which variables you need to select to answer your research question.
  3. In the search results, click along the tabs at the top to see the information represented in different formats. Copy the URL of each search to include in your blog post.

DUE
SlaveVoyages.org Blog Post (300 words)

Thursday

READ
John Thornton, “Introduction” and “The Birth of an Atlantic World” in Africa and Africans in the Making of the Atlantic World (Second Edition) (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998) [CR 1-42]

DUE

  1. Revised blog post
  2. One question for contributors about the Slavevoyages.org project
  3. One question for the contributors about why they study the Atlantic World and what they have learned from this approach

Week 4

Tuesday

READ
“The Latest Steps (Direct from Paris)” and “Dances of the Country (Independence)” in National Rhythms, African Roots [91-163]

EXPLORE
“Transcribe,” Library of Virginia

  1. Read the “About” page.
  2. Select a document from the “Virginia Untold: African American Narrative” collection that needs review.
  3. Review the document, making any changes to the transcription that are necessary.
  4. Save your transcription. 
  5. Copy the URL for the document.

DUE

  1. Transcription Blog Post (200 words)
  2. One discussion question about the relationship between Europe and the Atlantic World or about culture in the Americas around Independence

Thursday

READ
“Dancing for Joy (Colonial Choreographies)” and “Morena” (American Eve) in National Rhythms, African Roots [165-204]

WordPress Support, “Categories vs. Tags”

DUE

  1. Revised blog post
  2. One discussion question about the relationship between colonial or national identity and music and/or music
  3. Identify a set of “tags” and “categories” that organize your first three blog posts and bring the list to class.

Week 5

Tuesday

READ
“Tia Ciata’s House (Rio de Janeiro)” in National Rhythms, African Roots [33-50]

Richard Anderson, Alex Borucki, Daniel Domingues da Silva, David Eltis, Paul Lachance, Philip Misevich, and Olatunji Ojo. "Using African Names to Identify the Origins of Captives in the Transatlantic Slave Trade: Crowd-Sourcing and the Registers of Liberated Africans, 1808–1862." History in Africa 40 (2013) [CR 165-191]

EXPLORE
African Origins

  1. Read the FAQs on the help page. 
  2. Watch the video on the help page.
  3. Try searching for several names.

DUE
African-origins.org Blog Post (300 words)

Thursday

READ 
Barbara Browning, “Headspin: Capoeira’s Ironic Inversion,” in Everynight Life: Culture and Dance in Latin/o America, edited by Celeste Fraser Delgado and José Esteban Muñoz. (Durham: Duke University Press, 1997) [CR 65-92] 

Miriam Posner, “Some things to think about before you exhort everyone to code

TRY 
"CSS," W3Schools

  1. Play around with this coding sandbox.
  2. Jot down a few notes about what is intuitive, and what is more difficult to figure out.

DUE

  1. Revised blog post 
  2. Short, informal paragraph on 1) what Browning might mean by “inversion” OR 2) what does the hyphen in Afro-Brazilian signal or contain?

Week 6

Tuesday

READ
John Charles Chasteen, “The Prehistory of Samba: Carnival dancing in Rio de Janeiro, 1840–1917.” Journal of Latin American Studies 28 (1996) [CR 29-47] 

EXPLORE
NPR, “In Rio, A Universe Of Samba”

DUE
Music Description Blog Post (300 Words) 

Thursday

READ
“Prologue,” “A Samba Night,” and “A Little History” in Samba [3-43] 

 “HTML5 Introduction,” W3Schools

EXPLORE
“HTML Example,” W3Schools

DUE

  1. Revised blog post 
  2. Discussion question focused on Guillermoprieto’s methodology, on the interaction between sound and movement, on the socioeconomics/ geographies of samba, OR a topic of your choice

Week 7

Tuesday

READ
“Euride’s Baby, Celina’s Visitor” and “Rituals and Celebrations,” in Samba [100-126]

“World Wide Access: Accessible Web Design,” University of Washington

DUE
Ethnographic Blog Post (300 words)

Thursday

READ
“Carnival Saturday,” “Carnival Sunday,” “Parade,” and “Epilogue” in Samba [209-242]

Sample NEH Digital Humanities Grant Application (focus on the abstract and innovation sections on pages 3 and 4)

DUE

  1. Revised blog post 
  2. Outline or draw an idea for a digital project that would accompany an ethnographic project like Samba. What kinds of material would you include and how would you organize it?

Week 8

Tuesday

READ 
“The Podestá Brothers’ Circus” in National Rhythms, African Roots [51-70]

EXPLORE
Google Ngram

  1. Use keywords related to Tango (Milonga, Gardel, Piazzola, etc.) or any terms from Chasteen’s chapter.
  2. Experiment with changing your date range and the language of the “corpus.”

READ
Sara Zhang, “The Pitfalls of Using Google Ngram to Study Language” 

DUE

Ngram Blog Post (300 words) 

Thursday

READ
Robert Farris Thompson, “The Cultural Preparation” in Tango: The Art History of Love (New York: Knopf Doubleday, 2010) [CR 48-111]

EXPLORE
Omeka Websites

  1. Transatlantic Encounters: Latin American Artists in Paris between the Wars 
  2. Smith College Libraries
  3. History Corps at the University of Iowa
  4. The History Harvest at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln
  5. Digital Initiatives, University of Massachusetts Lowell Libraries
  6. Homer Shantz Collection, University of Arizona
  7. Digital Amherst, The Jones Library

DUE

  1. Revised blog post
  2. Jot down some notes about what you found useful and less useful from these webpages. Note, what links don’t work? What kinds of collections do people create? 
  3. Bring to class a one paragraph proposal for an Omeka exhibit that relates to the class topic. This proposal can be informal, but should include some ideas for specific materials you would like to feature.

Week 9

Tuesday

READ
Paulina Alberto, “El Negro Raúl: Lives and Afterlives of an Afro-Argentine Celebrity, 1886 to the Present,” Hispanic American Historical Review 96:4 (2016) [CR 669-710]

“Working with Dublin Core,” Omeka

DUE
Primary Source Blog Post (300 words)

Thursday 

READ
Simon Collier, “The Popular Roots of the Argentine Tango,” History Workshop Journal 34 (Fall 1992) [CR 92-100]

DUE

  1. Revised blog post 
  2. Primary Source analysis (1 informal paragraph) Locate a primary source that relates to some aspect of the class (consider Slavevoyages.org for documents). It may be digitized already or you may choose to digitize it. Identify who wrote or created the source, where, when, and why.

Week 10

Tuesday

READ
Matthew B. Karush, “Blackness in Argentina: Jazz, Tango and Race Before Perón,” Past Present 216:1 (2012) [CR 215-245]

EXPLORE
Matthew Karush, "Musicians in Transit"

DUE
“Blackness in Argentina” WordPress Page

Thursday

READ
Marta E. Savigliano, “Whiny Ruffians and Rebellious Broads: Tango as a Spectacle of Eroticized Social Tension.” In Theatre Journal 47:1 (1995) [CR 83-104]

DUE

  1. Revised blog post
  2. Two discussion questions about identity and tango 
  3. Preliminary bibliography (1 university published book and 2 peer reviewed articles) about the topic you would like to pursue for your Omeka exhibit

Week 11

Tuesday

READ
“Failde’s Orchestra (Havana) in National Rhythms, African Roots [71-90]

EXPLORE
Carto

  1. Create an account
  2. Use the mapping software to represent the locations discussed in Chasteen’s Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, and Havana chapters.
  3. Embed your map(s) on your blog post.

DUE
Mapping Blog Post (300 words)

Thursday

READ
Juliet E. McMains, “Introduction,” in Spinning Mambo Into Salsa: Caribbean Dance in Global Commerce (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015) [CR 1-26]

Purdue Owl, “Annotated Bibliography”

DUE

  1. Revised blog post
  2. Informal paragraph on what McMains means by ‘global commerce.” How is this a useful approach to understanding cultural forms?
  3. Annotated bibliography with your three preliminary bibliography sources.

Week 12

Thanksgiving


Week 13

Tuesday

Bring your laptop OR hardcopies of your 10 blog posts. Let me know by Monday if you would like me to print them.  

READ
Richard M. Shain, “The Re(Public) of Salsa: Afro-Cuban Music in Fin-de-Siècle Dakar,” Africa 2 (2009) [CR 186-206]

DUE
WordPress Home Page

Thursday

READ
N. Jade Gibson, “Moving bodies, shifting selves: integration and incorporation through ‘jazzing’ and ‘salsa’ dance in Cape Town,” Journal of the Musical Arts in Africa 10 (2013) [CR 33-52]

DUE

  1. Revised home page 
  2. To be determined first Omeka contribution

Week 14

Tuesday

No Reading

DUE
Omeka exhibit first drafts

Thursday

No Reading

DUE
Explore your colleagues’ Omeka drafts. Check links, test maps, etc. Bring comments to class about what works in terms of structure and organization, and what suggestions you have for changes. 


Week 15

Tuesday

No Reading

DUE
TBD Omeka contribution

Thursday

No Reading

DUE
TBD Omeka contribution