Canadian Digital Humanities
Series edited by Dean Irvine
Contributions by Kiera Obbard, Sandra Djwa, Roopika Risam, Andrea Zeffiro, Deanna Fong, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Gregory Betts, Eric Schmaltz, Dani Spinosa, Klara du Plessis, David Gaertner, Mark V. Campbell, Jon Saklofske, Julia Polyck-O’Neill, Kim Martin, Rashmeet Kaur, Pascale Dangoisse, Constance Crompton, Michelle Schwartz, Katherine McLeod, Graham H. Jensen, Allan Cho, Sarah Zhang, Kendra Cowley, Susan Brown and Asen Ivanov
Series: Canadian Literature Collection
Imprint: University of Ottawa Press
Across more than twenty chapters, Future Horizons explores the past, present, and future of digital humanities research, teaching, and experimentation in Canada. Bringing together work by established and emerging scholars, this collection presents contemporary initiatives in digital humanities alongside a reassessment of the field’s legacy to date and conversations about its future potential. It also offers a historical view of the important, yet largely unknown, digital projects in Canada.
Future Horizons offers deep dives into projects that enlist a diverse range of approaches—from digital games to makerspaces, sound archives to born-digital poetry, visual arts to digital textual analysis—and that work with both historical and contemporary Canadian materials. The essays demonstrate how these diverse approaches challenge disciplinary knowledge by enabling humanities researchers to ask new questions.
The collection challenges the idea that there is either a single definition of digital humanities or a collective national identity. By looking to digital engagements with race, Indigeneity, gender, and sexuality—not to mention history, poetry, and nationhood—this volume expands what it means to work at the intersection of digital humanities and humanities in Canada today.
Available formats: trade paperback, accessible PDF, and accessible ePub
1. Digital Canadas? Transforming the Nation — Sarah Roger and Paul Barrett
Part 1. Situating and Disrupting Digital Scholarship
2. Where Is the Nation in Digital Humanities, Revisited — Roopika Risam
3. Rerouting Digital (Humanities) Scholarship in Canada — Andrea Zeffiro
4. Closed, Open, Stopped: Indigenous Sovereignty and the Possibility of Decolonial DH — David Gaertner
5. “This Game Needs to be Made”: Playable Theories ⇌ Virtual Worlds — Jon Saklfoske
6. Reimagining Representational Codes in Data Visualization: What Contemporary Digital Humanities Might Learn from Visual Arts-Based Disciplines — Julia Polyck-O’Neill
7. Making, Conversation: An Experiment in Public Digital Humanities — Kim Martin and Rashmeet Kaur
Part 2. Digital Poetics
8. Canadian Poetry and the Computational Concordance: Sandra Djwa and the Early History of Canadian Humanities Computing — Sarah Roger, Paul Barrett, and Kiera Obbard
9. Canadian Poetry and the Computer — Sandra Djwa
10. “saga uv th relees uv human spirit from compuewterr funckshuns”: Space Conquest, IBM, and the Anti-digital Anxiety of Early Canadian Digital Poetics (1960–1968) — Gregory Betts
11. From the Digits to the Digital: Bodies in the Machines of Canadian Concrete Poetics — Eric Schmaltz
12. Nations of Touch: The Politics of Electronic Literature as Digital Humanities — Dani Spinosa
13. STOP WORDS — Klara du Plessis
Part 3. Digital Canadian Archives
14. Wages Due Both Then and Now — Pascale Dangoisse, Constance Crompton, and Michelle Schwartz
15. Analog Thrills, Digital Spills: On the Fred Wah Digital Archive version 2.0 — Deanna Fong and Ryan Fitzpatrick
16. Humanizing the Archive: The potential of Hip-Hop archives in the digital humanities — Mark Campbell
17. Sounding Digital Humanities — Katherine McLeod
18. Unsettling Colonial Mapping: Sonic-Spatial Representations of amiskwaciwâskahikan — Kendra Cowley
19. Beyond “Mere Digitization”: Introducing the Canadian Modernist Magazines Project — Graham H. Jensen
20. “A Legacy of Race and Data: Mining the History of Exclusion” — Allan Cho and Sarah Zhang
Kiera Obbard (Contributor)
Kiera Obbard is a poet and PhD candidate in the School of English and Theatre Studies at the University of Guelph. Her SSHRC-funded project, “The Instagram Effect: Contemporary Canadian Poetry Online,” examines the complex social, cultural, technological, and economic conditions that have enabled the success of social media poetry in Canada, how the technological affordances of social media platforms mediate reading and writing, and the relationship between social media poetry and data mining practices. She completed her MA in Cultural Studies and Critical Theory at McMaster University and her honours BA with a joint major in English and Communication at the University of Ottawa. She is currently a graduate research assistant for the Translating Digital Canadas project, a fellow at The Humanities Interdisciplinary Collaboration (THINC) Lab, and an editorial board member for the Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies.
Sandra Djwa (Contributor)
Sandra Djwa is a scholar of Canadian Literature and author of ten books, including The Politics of the Imagination: A Life of F.R. Scott (McClelland and Stewart, 1987), Professing English: A Life of Roy Daniells (University of Toronto Press, 2002), and Journey with No Maps: A Life of P.K. Page (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2012; winner of the 2013 Governor General Award for Non-fiction). She co-founded the Association of Canadian and Quebec Literatures in 1973. She has been a member of the Royal Society of Canada since 1994.
Roopika Risam (Contributor)
Roopika Risam is Associate Professor of Film and Media Studies and of Comparative Literature and Faculty of Digital Humanities and Social Engagement at Dartmouth College. She is the author of New Digital Worlds: Postcolonial Digital Humanities in Theory, Praxis, and Pedagogy (Northwestern University Press, 2018). Among her edited collections, The Digital Black Atlantic, part of the Debates in the Digital Humanities series, was published by University of Minnesota Press in 2021. Risam is the co-editor of Reviews in Digital Humanities, a journal offering peer review of digital scholarship, and director of the Digital Ethnic Futures Consortium, a Mellon Foundation-funded initiative to support teaching and research at the intersections of ethnic studies and digital humanities. More information is available at http://roopikarisam.com.
Andrea Zeffiro (Contributor)
Andrea Zeffiro is Assistant Professor in critical technology studies in the Department of Communication Studies and Media Arts and Academic Director for the Lewis & Ruth Sherman Centre for Digital Scholarship at McMaster University. Her work has appeared in Cultural Analytics, the Canadian Journal of Communications, Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, Convergence, Studies in Social Justice, and many edited collections.
Deanna Fong (Contributor)
Deanna Fong is a SSHRC-funded researcher at Concordia University, where she directs the digital archive of Canadian poet Fred Wah (fredwah.ca). With a team of student researchers and Systems Librarian Tomasz Neugebauer, she is working on visualizing the site’s social metadata, which represents the roles and activities that go into literary production. With Cole Mash, she is the co-editor of a forthcoming collection of essays, interviews, and art titled Resistant Practices in Communities of Sound (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2023). Her book of interviews, Concern and Commitment: Seven Oral Histories with Innovative Vancouver Women, is forthcoming with Talonbooks (2024). She is the literary editor at The Capilano Review.
Ryan Fitzpatrick (Contributor)
Ryan Fitzpatrick is a poet and researcher living in Toronto/Tkaronto. His research focuses on contemporary poetics and questions of space and intimacy. He has recently published academic articles in Studies in Canadian Literature and Canadian Literature. He is the author of four books of poetry, including Sunny Ways (Invisible 2023) and Coast Mountain Foot (Talonbooks 2021). With Deanna Fong, Janey Dodd, and others, he worked on the second iteration of the Fred Wah Digital Archive (fredwah.ca).
Gregory Betts (Contributor)
Gregory Betts is a scholar, editor, and experimental poet with collections published in Canada, the United States, Australia, and Ireland. He is most acknowledged for If Language (Book*hug, 2005), a collection of paragraph-length anagrams, and The Others Raisd in Me (Pedlar, 2009), 150 poems carved out of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 150. His other books explore conceptual, collaborative, and concrete poetics. He has lectured and performed internationally, including at the Sorbonne Université, the Johannes Gutenberg Universität Mainz, the National Library of Ireland, and the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games as part of the “Cultural Olympiad,” among others. He is a professor of Canadian and avant-garde literature at Brock University, where he has produced two of the most exhaustive academic studies of avant-garde writing in Canada, Avant- Garde Canadian Literature: The Early Manifestations (2013) and Finding Nothing: The VanGardes, 1959–1975 (2020), both published with University of Toronto Press. He has served as the President of the Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English (ACCUTE), the Craig Dobbin Professor of Canadian Studies at University College Dublin, and the Chancellor’s Chair for Research Excellence at Brock University. He is currently the curator of the bpNichol.ca Digital Archive and Associate Director of the Social Justice Research Initiative.
Eric Schmaltz (Contributor)
Eric Schmaltz is an academic, poet, and editor. He holds a PhD from York University, where he studied Canadian and avant-garde literature. He is the author of Surfaces (Invisible Publishing, 2018) and several shorter creative works, including Language in Hues (Timglaset, 2021). He is also co-editor of I Want to Tell You Love by bill bissett and Milton Acorn (University of Calgary Press, 2021). His writing has appeared in Canadian Literature, English Studies in Canada, Jacket2, Bomb, The Capilano Review, and other places. A former SSHRC postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pennsylvania, he is currently Writer-on-the-Grounds at Glendon College.
Dani Spinosa (Contributor)
Dani Spinosa is a poet of digital and print media, an on-again-off-again precarious professor, the managing editor of the Electronic Literature Directory, and a co-founding editor of Gap Riot Press. She has published several chapbooks of poetry, several more peer-reviewed journal articles on poetry, one long scholarly book, and one pink poetry book.
Klara du Plessis (Contributor)
Klara du Plessis is a FRQSC-funded, final-year PhD candidate at Concordia University, and is affiliated with the SpokenWeb research network. An interdisciplinary project straddling English literature, curatorial studies, and performance, her doctoral work aims to schematize different modes of literary event curation and to think critically about the often-neglected labour that goes into shaping poetry reading series, whether live or in the audio archive. Her research focuses on twentieth century and contemporary Canadian poetry, and develops a research creation component called Deep Curation, an approach that places poets’ work in deliberate dialogue with each other and heightens the curator’s agency toward the poetic product. In this capacity, she has worked with an amazing array of poets, including Alexei Perry Cox and Kama La Mackerel. Klara is the author of Ekke (Palimpsest, 2018; winner of the 2019 Pat Lowther Memorial Award) and Hell Light Flesh (Palimpsest, 2020) and has also edited a book of experimental criticism based on transcription and citation with SpokenWeb and in collaboration with Emma Telaro called Quotes: Transcriptions on Listening, Sound, Agency.
David Gaertner (Contributor)
David Gaertner is a settler scholar and Assistant Professor in the Institute for Critical Indigenous Studies at the University of British Columbia and the co-director of the CEDaR Space, a community-oriented new media and digital storytelling lab. He is the author of The Theatre of Regret: Literature, Art, and the Politics of Reconciliation in Canada (University of British Columbia Press, 2020), the editor of Sôhkêyihta: The Poetry of Sky Dancer Louise Bernice Halfe (Wilfred Laurier University Press, 2018), and co-editor of Read, Listen, Tell: Indigenous Stories from Turtle Island (Wilfred Laurier University Press, 2017).
Mark V. Campbell (Contributor)
Mark V. Campbell is a DJ, scholar, and curator. His research explores the relationships between Afrosonic innovations, hip-hop archives, and notions of the human. Mark is currently the principal investigator in the SSHRC-funded research project Hip-Hop Archives: The Poetics and Potentials of Knowledge Production and founder at Northside Hip-Hop Archives. His recent books include the monograph AfroSonic Life (Bloomsbury, 2022), the co-edited collection of essays We Still Here: Hip Hop in North of the 49th Parallel (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2020), and his collection Hip-Hop Archives: The Politics and Poetics of Knowledge Production (University of Chicago Press, 2023), co-edited with Murray Forman. He is Assistant Professor of Music and Culture at the University of Toronto Scarborough and holds research fellow positions with the Laboratory for Artistic Intelligence and the Research Centre for Music, Sound and Society in Canada.
Jon Saklofske (Contributor)
Jon Saklofske, Literature Professor at Acadia University, is insatiably curious about intersections between media forms and cultural perceptions. In addition to experimenting with virtual environments and games as tools for academic research, communication, and pedagogy, Jon’s other research and research-creation interests include environmental storytelling in theme parks, values-based game design, alternative platforms for open social scholarship, and the critical potential of feminist war games.
Julia Polyck-O’Neill (Contributor)
Julia Polyck-O’Neill is an artist, curator, critic, poet, and writer. A former visiting scholar at University of the Arts London (Chelsea College of Arts), lecturer at the Obama Institute at Johannes Gutenberg Universität Mainz (2017–2018), and international fellow of the Electronic Literature Organization, she is currently a SSHRC postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Visual Art and Art History and the Sensorium Centre for Digital Arts and Technology at York University (Toronto) where she studies digital, feminist approaches to interdisciplinary artists’ archives. Her writing has been published in Zeitschrift für Ästhetik und Allgemeine Kunstwissenschaft (The Journal for Aesthetics and General Art History), English Studies in Canada, DeGruyter Open Cultural Studies, BC Studies, Canadian Literature, and other places.
Kim Martin (Contributor)
Kim Martin is Assistant Professor of History and Culture and Technology Studies at the University of Guelph. She is Associate Director of THINC Lab and Research Board Chair for the Linked Infrastructure for Networked Cultural Scholarship (LINCS). Her research interests include serendipity in digital environments; the information behaviour of humanities scholars; and local, community-focused oral history.
Rashmeet Kaur (Contributor)
Rashmeet Kaur completed her Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Guelph and is currently a Master of Public Health candidate at Drexel University’s Dornsife School of Public Health. Rashmeet loves to merge her passion for both the sciences and the humanities with poetry and mixed media artwork. She believes all forms of art have transformative power and this has sparked her passion for facilitating community workshops where she encourages participants to use various art forms as storytelling and social justice tools. Rashmeet’s artwork and poetry have been published in local and international publications, including Kaleidoscope, Margins Magazine, and Nature is a Human Right. You can visit her online at https://dissectionoftheself.wordpress.com/ and follow her @_rashmeet.k on Instagram.
Pascale Dangoisse (Contributor)
Pascale Dangoisse is a PhD candidate at the University of Ottawa and a research assistant on the Lesbian and Gay Liberation in Canada (LGLC) project. Her research focuses on the study of liberal political discourses on the topic of feminism and women’s rights in Canada. Her research is particularly interested in understanding how systemic discrimination persists under liberal or progressive governments.
Constance Crompton (Contributor)
Constance Crompton is Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Ottawa and Canada Research Chair in Digital Humanities. She directs the University of Ottawa’s Labo de données en sciences humaines/ The Humanities Data Lab and is a member of the Lesbian and Gay Liberation in Canada (LGLC), Linked Infrastructure for Networked Cultural Scholarship, and Implementing New Knowledge Environments Partnership research teams. She serves as Associate Director of the Digital Humanities Summer Institute, North America’s largest digital humanities training institute. She is the co-editor of two volumes, Doing Digital Humanities and Doing More Digital Humanities (Routledge 2016, 2019). She lives and works on unceded Algonquin land.
Michelle Schwartz (Contributor)
Michelle Schwartz is an educational developer at Toronto Metropolitan University’s Centre for Excellence in Learning & Teaching where they focus on inclusive and accessible teaching and learning. They co-direct Lesbian and Gay Liberation in Canada (LGLC; lglc.ca), a SSHRC-funded digital humanities research project that is building an interactive digital resource for the study of LGBTQ history in Canada, and serve on the Board of Directors of the ArQuives: Canada’s LGBTQ2+ Archives.
Katherine McLeod (Contributor)
Katherine McLeod is Affiliate Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Concordia University. She is writing a book that is a feminist listening to recordings of women poets on the radio, and she is the principal investigator of her SSHRC-funded project “Literary Radio: Developing New Methods of Audio Research.” She has co-edited, with Jason Camlot, CanLit Across Media: Unarchiving the Literary Event (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2019) and has published on poetry, performance, and archives in journals such as Canadian Literature and Mosaic. She produces ShortCuts—a monthly series about archival audio—for The SpokenWeb Podcast.
Graham H. Jensen (Contributor)
Graham H. Jensen is the principal investigator of the Canadian Modernist Magazines Project (modernistmags.ca) and a Mitacs accelerate and INKE Partnership postdoctoral fellow in the Electronic Textual Cultures Lab at the University of Victoria. In the latter role, he helps manage research, development, and user testing for the Canadian Humanities and Social Sciences Commons (beta version at hsscommons.ca). Previously, at the University of Victoria, he was a SSHRC postdoctoral fellow in English and an associate fellow in the Centre for Studies in Religion and Society. His wide-ranging research interests include Canadian literature, modernism, twentieth- and twenty-first-century literature and religion, critical infrastructure studies, critical digital humanities, and open scholarship. His research is published or forthcoming in The Edinburgh Companion to Modernism, Myth and Religion; Interdisciplinary Digital Engagement in Arts & Humanities; Open Scholarship Press Collections: Connection; Pop! Public. Open. Participatory; English Studies in Canada; University of Toronto Quarterly; William James Studies; Canadian Poetry; and The Sound and the Fury: A Hypertext Edition.
Allan Cho (Contributor)
Allan Cho has an MLIS in Library and Information Studies, an MA in History, and an MA in Educational Technology, all from the University of British Columbia. His previous professional roles include Research Commons librarian and digital humanities liaison librarian. Allan’s research interests are in Asian Canadian history, literature, and culture, and outside of work he volunteers his time for several community organizations with anti-racism and solidarity building. Allan’s work includes supporting ongoing community initiatives and leading new ones, focusing on community engagement with historically underrepresented groups, subject liaison librarian with the School of Information, and developing an Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Scholars-in-Residence program with the support of the Peña Family Foundation.
Sarah Zhang (Contributor)
Sarah Zhang is the Librarian for Geography, GIS, and Maps at Simon Fraser University. Sarah holds master’s degrees in Library and Information Studies and Ecology. As an immigrant, she is constantly inspired by the cultures around her. Her current research interests include spatial literacy and open scholarship.
Kendra Cowley (Contributor)
Kendra Cowley is a public librarian and forever-researcher based in Tkaronto.
Susan Brown (Contributor)
Susan Brown is Professor of English and Canada Research Chair in Collaborative Digital Scholarship at the University of Guelph. Her research explores intersectional feminism, literary history, and online modes of collaborative knowledge production. She directs the Orlando Project in British women’s writing, the Canadian Writing Research Collaboratory, and the Linked Infrastructure for Networked Cultural Scholarship. She collaborates with colleagues at Guelph in running The Humanities Interdisciplinary Collaboration (THINC) Lab, the DH@Guelph Summer Workshops, and the major in Culture and Technology Studies.
Asen Ivanov (Contributor)
Asen Ivanov holds a PhD in Information Studies from the University of Toronto and an MA in Heritage Studies from the University of Amsterdam. His research and teaching expertise is in the technologies and practices through which cultural heritage and media organizations collect, organize, preserve, and assign value to cultural works. Most recently, Asen was Michael Ridley Postdoctoral Fellow in Digital Humanities at the University of Guelph.
Sarah Roger (Editor)
Sarah Roger is the project manager for the Linked Infrastructure for Networked Cultural Scholarship (LINCS) and Adjunct Professor in the School of English and Theatre Studies at the University of Guelph. She is the author of Borges and Kafka: Sons and Writers (Oxford University Press, 2017). Sarah is the co-investigator, with Paul Barrett, on two SSHRC-funded research projects that study how Canadian literary discourse is transformed in online spaces.
Paul Barrett (Editor)
Paul Barrett is Associate Professor in the School of English and Theatre Studies and Culture and Technology Studies at the University of Guelph. He is the author of Blackening Canada: Diaspora, Race, Multiculturalism (University of Toronto Press, 2015) and the editor of ’Membering Austin Clarke (Wilfred Laurier University Press, 2020). His research is at the intersection of Canadian literature, digital humanities, diaspora, and critical race theory. He is the co-investigator, with Sarah Roger, on two SSHRC-funded research projects that study how Canadian literary discourse is transformed in online spaces.