Writing Assignment 1: What is DH?

Michael Hoffman

Intro to Digital Humanities


What is Digital Humanities?

     In order to create a working definition of digital humanities, it is necessary to examine to what effect of the use of specific digital tools have in a research setting. Michael Kramer discusses in his article, “What Does Digital Humanities Bring to the Table” his students’ use of the WordPress plugin WP-Table Reloaded to analyze coursework. The students found that the tool could present recorded observations in such a way that was highly conducive for developing larger interpretations. “The table sent out a structure—a pathway—for the student to step up as they reached toward a more nuanced assessment” (Kramer). Additionally students were forced to “look, listen, feel, and sense more intensely, more closely, and with more awareness” (Kramer).

     Lincoln Mullen lists several examples in his article, “Digital Humanities Is a Spectrum; or, We’re all Digital Humanists Now” of digital tools used by various people that help organize, present, provide access, and verify multiple literary works. Word documents, print-on-demand machines, archive websites, and Blackboard are among those Mullen lists.

     These examples show how the application of digital tools can enhance multiple aspects of scholarship such as researching, analyzing data, publishing and teaching. With this in mind, my working definition of digital humanities is as follows: an area of academic study that deals with the utilization of digital tools and methods to enhance various aspects of scholarship such as collaborative research, teaching, and publishing that concern humanities disciplines such as philosophy, literature, comparative religion, ethics, history, and the arts.


Kramer, Michael. “What Does Digital Humanities Bring to the Table”

Mullen, Lincoln. “Digital Humanities Is a Spectrum; or, We’re all Digital Humanists Now”