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DLL Seminar Summary

By Samuel J. Huskey | July 27, 2015

On June 25 and 26, 2015, the DLL convened an international seminar on Latin textual criticism in the digital age on the campus of the University of Oklahoma, in the Peggy V. Helmerich Collaborative Learning Center inside of Bizzell Library.

Participants came from Germany, Italy, Ireland, Canada, and the United States to talk about about various aspects of textual criticism, from technical standards for encoding critical editions to more philosophical papers about what digital critical editions are and/or should be.

We had originally planned to publish papers on the DLL's site, but most of the participants found that informal presentations of their work led to more fruitful discussion. Many used slideshows to illustrate their points, but the slides are not of much use without accompanying commentary from the participant.

Papers Presented at the DLL Conference on Textual Criticism in the Digital Age

  • Hugh Cayless (Duke University/Duke Collaboratory for Classics Computing): "The TEI Critical Apparatus Module and Digital Critical Editions, or Why Your Digital Edition Should Have a Data Model"

This paper argues that the best available form for this kind of digital artifact exists, and is defined by the Text Encoding Initiative Guidelines.

  • Andrew Dunning (Collaborative Program in Editing Medieval Texts, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of Toronto): "Scholarly Editions as Networks of Texts"

There are few established standards for determining what information from a manuscript must be recorded. I categorize the various possibilities into three levels of transcription, showing how these correspond to potential research questions.

  • Franz Fischer (Cologne Center for eHumanities, Universität zu Köln): "Requirements of the 'critical' for a digital corpus of scholarly editions"

My presentation aims at sketching out crucial requirements for the full integration of already existing critical editions (both in digital and in print) into a large digital corpus as well as the creation of new critical editions within the same framework of a digital library

  • Fred Gibbs (Assistant Professor of History, Univ. of New Mexico): No Title

This paper will attempt to establish a theoretical foundation for fundamental values of digital editing that incorporates design, interfaces, databases, code, and encoding as crucial to the project, not simply the resulting text itself. The paper also comments on a number of possible new criteria, such as reusability, sustainability, and interface design of critical editions; it also speculates about fundamentally new approaches to evaluation.

  • Rick Hale and Ian McElroy (Rutgers University): "Learning Livy: Modelling a Collaborative Digital Critical Edition for Students"

We propose a paper describing the designing and development of a student's critical edition of a Latin language text. Our broader goal is to facilitate collaborative and independent learning, as well as encourage critical research by undergraduate and secondary student populations.

  • Tom Keeline (Western Washington University): "The Apparatus Criticus in the Digital Age"

In my paper I will outline what editors and readers can gain from a fundamentally new approach to the apparatus criticus.

  • Dániel Kiss (University College Dublin): "Developing digital critical editions: two reflections on media change
    in the humanities."

The new medium offers advantages in terms of ease of access, presentation and storage space, but it also poses a number of challenges. In my paper I will reflect on these from a double perspective: as the creator of a pioneering digital critical edition, and as someone who has studied another instance of media change in the transmission of classical literature.

  • Francesco Stella (University of Siena): "Digital policies for the critical edition of Latin medieval texts"

I will compare and discuss multiple models of editions of medieval texts, and trace them back to the typology of archive-edition (or, like in the new MGH pre-editions, mere transcriptions of a more or less authoritative witness). We believe that these methods considerably increase the scientific verifiability of a critical edition, but wonder why just in rare cases (as in the "Corpus Rhythmorum Musicum" or in Dante's "Monarchia") such experiments gave birth to editions which are not only archival but also reconstructive: is it a limit of the tool or a methodologic trend of this research area?

  • Jeffrey C. Witt (Loyola University Maryland): "Placing digital critical editions within a critical corpus: Using
    Semantic Markup And Linked Data To Connect Editions Throughout An Entire Tradition"

In this paper, I would like to consider how a thoughtful approach to editing—through the TEI encoding of individual commentaries—could automatically contribute to the construction of a centralized RDF metadata archive.