By UST Graduate English Program
Graduate English student Lindy Hensley recently presented a paper on Native American song lyrics at the New England American Studies Association (NEASA) conference and was later asked by the editor of In Media Res (http://mediacommons.futureofthebook.org/imr/) to curate a piece for this week’s online theme: Indigenous Sounds. In Media Res is dedicated to experimenting with collaborative, multi-modal forms of online scholarship. Its goal is to promote an online dialogue amongst scholars and the public about contemporary approaches to studying media as well as provide a forum for more immediate critical engagement with media at a pace closer to how we experience mediated texts.
As curator, Hensley had the liberty to choose any video (3 minutes or less) from the Internet. She selected a piece that she believes reflects current Indigenous sounds, using social media as a forum to give voice to an ongoing, absurd problem about Native American identity.
Hensley agreed to work with In Media Res because of a keynote NEASA conference lecture that Dr. Stephen Lubar (Brown University) gave on rapid changes occurring in the Digital Humanities. Lubar incorporates digital sites like Omeka, Pinterest, Storify, and i-Movie in his curriculum. These technological tools are replacing traditional pathways of learning; or, as he said, “Disintermediation wipes out the middlemen.” Digital Humanities was originally thought to be used as the translator between academic speak and the public access, but according to Lubar, that’s not how it is unfolding.
Hensley indicates that "the whole topic on Digital Humanities is fascinating and this was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up."